Sustainability

Amsterdam Light Festival is a yearly-occuring exhibition of light art in the public space. Every year approximately 20 light artworks tell a new story. This way, we literally and figuratively enlighten the darkest days and inspire and connect the visitors and residents of Amsterdam. Naturally, we strive to do this with a minimized footpint.

Sustainability Manifesto

In 2022 over 20 festivals in Europe have signed the ILO Sustainable Manifesto, among which was Amsterdam Light Festival. This manifesto is drafted by the international association International Lightfestival Organisation (ILO) to contribute to more sustainable light festival worldwide. With our signature, we commit to becoming more sustainable in what we do as a festival and also spread the knowlegde. Festival director Frédérique ter Brugge is board member of this association.

SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals - KIT Royal Tropical Institute

Energy consumption

  • The total expected consumption of Edition 11 is 15.000 kWh for all operations and the 20 light artworks over 53 days. We expect to reach 500.000 residents, locals and other visitors, which results in an energy consumption of 30 watt per person. This roughly equals watching TV for a night, or the daily use (including charging) of a smartphone.
  • Using LED lights, only in exceptional cases we make use of neon light.
  • Using (green) mainspower, no diesel-powered generators.
  • Newly developerd energie sources remain available for the neighborhood.
  • Our cruises are executed by Official Partners with a fleet that is largely equipped with electrical motors.
  • We aim for 100% electric in 2025. Take a look at our cruise experiences here, and read more about electric boats in 2025 here.

Energy - United Nations Sustainable Development

Materials

  • A large part of the artworks is replaced or given a permanent spot after the festival.
  • The materials of the artworks that cannot be replaced after the festival are seperated and recycled where possible.
  • The focus is on digital communication in stead of printed means (for the sake of inclusivity we have a small batch of printed route maps available).
  • Flags and other outdoor communication is re-used where possible. When they are damaged we donate the materials to an artist or organisation for repurposing

SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production - KIT Royal Tropical  Institute

Mobility

  • Most of our experiences depart from Central Station, which stimulates visitors to come by public transport.
  • Residents of Amsterdam come by foot or by bike.
  • For bigger groups Zouthaven is the departure locations, so busses do not have to enter the city. For smaller groups the optimal departure location can be customized.
  • For the transport of (parts of) the artworks to Amsterdam we always make use of transport by land - preferrably by train - unless it has to come from outside of Europe.
  • The same applies to the travel and transportation of artists.
  • The artworks are build-up on the spot where possible, large transport is minimized.
  • For the (de)construction of the artworks we make use of a hub from where everything is transported on water via electrical boats.
  • The technical crew travels per electric boat, or by bike.

SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production - KIT Royal Tropical  Institute

Impulse

By stretching the festival out over a longer period of time we also spread the amount of visitors. Most visitors do no just come to Amsterdam for our festival, they will combine their visit with a day-activity or a stay. There is very little travel for the festival alone. Moreover, we provide businesses in Amsterdam with an extra impulse during the winter months.