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Event Planners Checklist for Green Events

Did you know that according to Meetgreen, a typical three-day conference with 1,000 attendees generates an estimated total of 5,670kg of waste? Organisers, suppliers and participants all play a role in event sustainability. While it may seem like one person can’t make a difference, quite the opposite is true. Consider some simple tips and tricks to make your next event more environmentally friendly.

Venue

  • Choose a venue with sustainability credentials such as an ISO accreditation, carbon neutral construction or LEED certification.
  • Choose a venue in a city centre location that’s well serviced by public transport options including bike sharing schemes, buses, rail or tram.
  • Make sure there is a variety of hotels near your venue for your delegates to choose from.
  • Choose a venue that focuses on reducing overall energy consumption by using sustainable energy suppliers.
  • Choose a venue with a lot of natural light.
  • Give accurate timings for your event so all lights and machinery can be switched off outside of event hours.
  • Make sure your venue has a comprehensive waste management policy in place.

Venue Sustainability

Travel and Transport

  • Promote or offer incentives to use hotels near the venue.
  • When planning additional activities for your delegates, use restaurants and entertainment close to the main venue.
  • Encourage delegates to use public transport available to them (walking, bike sharing scheme, bus, rail or tram) in an effort to reduce carbon emissions.
  • Plan start and finish times of your event to coincide with public transport timetables.

Hospitality and Catering 

  • Work with your Hospitality Manager to create an eco-friendly menu.
  • Use local suppliers who champion sustainable processes.
  • Monitor attendance and cater for the correct number of delegates to avoid excess food production and waste.
  • Avoid using disposable dinnerware and cutlery.
  • Avoid using plastic packaging, plastic bags and plastic bottles.
  • Avoid individually wrapped items including salt, pepper or sugar sachets.
  • Offer reusable or recycled napkins.
  • When possible, serve food buffet style rather than lunch box form.
  • When possible, serve finger foods that don’t need utensils.
  • Use water stations and jugs in place of plastic bottled water.

Sustainable Hospitality

Digital Technology 

  • Use electronic invitations, registrations systems and follow up procedures.
  • Create an app for your event to share important information and communicate with your delegates.
  • Use digital signage in place of physical banners, signs and branding.
  • Use video conferencing facilities as an option for long distance travelers or those unable to attend in person.
  • Use video conferencing for event planning meetings to avoid unnecessary travel.

Event and Exhibition Materials

  • Choose suppliers who produce materials in an environmentally friendly way.
  • Create a list of ‘green suppliers’ to give to conference exhibitors.
  • Source materials from local suppliers to cut down on transport emissions.
  • Avoid using specific event names or dates on exhibition materials so they can be reused.
  • Collect and reuse all name tags or provide for recycling.
  • Accurately estimate quantities of any printed material needed or print on-demand.
  • Print double sided on recycled, light-weight paper if printing is necessary.
  • If decorations or exhibition displays are needed, use reusable ones or ones that can be donated.
  • If needed, use dry-wipe boards, blackboards or projectors instead of flip charts and handouts.

Exhibition Materials

Event Merchandise and Gift Bags 

  • Minimise literature and delegate packs by using email, on-site touch screen PCs, or digital signage.
  • Fill gift bags with things people won’t throw away immediately such as reusable water bottles.  
  • Choose reusable bags such as shopping bags or tote bags.
  • Source pens, folders, gift bags etc. and any other branded material from recycled materials
  • Minimize the amount of printed literature in gift bags. Provide any important or necessary content on USB keys or host it on a website.

Cleaning and Recycling 

  • Work with the team at the venue to develop a waste management plan for your event.
  • Strategically place recycling stations around the venue to encourage delegates to dispose of waste correctly.
  • Use recyclable bin liner bags in recycling stations.
  • Ensure the venue cleaning team use eco-friendly cleaning products.
  • If using materials that are difficult to dispose of, tell your events team so they can put a plan in place to dispose of them correctly.

Click here to download a PDF version. 

To find out more about hosting your next event at The Convention Centre Dublin, get in touch with us today.