Insights > Ensuring a More Sustainable Mardi Gras in New Orleans

Ensuring a More Sustainable Mardi Gras in New Orleans


Carnival season in New Orleans is a magical time for revelers to enjoy the creativity and beauty of the Greatest Free Show on Earth. It can also be an environmentally eye-opening one.

More than 2.5 million pounds of debris are collected each year from the streets of New Orleans during the Carnival season. A significant amount of these items can easily be recycled for future seasons, keeping them out of the city's critical drainage system.

This Carnival season, paradegoers will be able to enjoy more sustainable options thanks to several initiatives being funded by Entergy shareholders.

Entergy is working with Grounds Krewe, a nonprofit organization focused on waste prevention, to increase recycling efforts and expand the use of eco-friendly throws and consumable goods that highlight New Orleans' unique culture, including red beans, jambalaya mix and ground coffee.

"Supporting programs that help ensure the sustainability of an event like Mardi Gras, a celebration that is part of the city's fabric, unique culture and appeal, fits well with our commitment to protecting the environment and our mission to add sustainable value to our communities," said Kelli Dowell, Entergy's director of environmental policy. "We appreciate the leadership of Grounds Krewe and look forward to spreading the word about this important and inventive initiative along the parade route."

Revelers will benefit from an "on the route" recycling effort in partnership with Entergy, ArcGNO, The Urban Conservancy and Republic Services.

Entergy is building upon its partnership-driven recycling efforts in 2019 where volunteers collected 3.5 tons of throws and 7,000 cans and bottles following three parades.

Paradegoers should be on the lookout for Entergy volunteers in neon vests Sunday, Feb. 23 during the Krewes of Okeanos, Mid-City and Thoth parades. Entergy volunteers will distribute labeled recycling bags to waiting paradegoers before the first parade and collect unwanted throws, aluminum cans and plastic waste following the last parade.

Entergy is also helping ensure a more sustainable Mardi Gras even before a parade begins. Grounds Krewe was awarded a grant from Entergy's shareholder-funded Environmental Initiatives Fund to launch an online Sustainable Throw Catalog. Catalog items are made from sustainable materials and biodegradable packaging and promote Louisiana culture and organizations. Keep your eyes peeled and your hands raised high for these coveted sustainable throws throughout the Carnival season.

These sustainable efforts contribute to Entergy's leadership role as an environmental advocate, while supporting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which were established in 2015 to create a brighter future on Earth. The company's EIF projects influence UNSDGs, including: (12) Responsible Consumption; (14) Life Below Water; (15) Life on Land and (17) Partnerships for the Goals, among other goals. Learn more about Entergy's commitment to the environment here.

Most importantly, Entergy reminds everyone to stay safe and be vigilant this Carnival season.