This is a collaborative post.
Are you the mastermind behind your organization’s upcoming corporate event? Whether it’s an international convention or an intimate regional tradeshow, these gatherings have the power to strengthen connections, foster relationships, and propel businesses to new heights.
However, they can also leave a substantial environmental footprint, generating waste and adversely affecting the planet and local communities.
This presents a unique opportunity to showcase your organization’s dedication to driving positive environmental change. Let’s explore a range of ways to infuse sustainability into your business event and transform it into a “greener” experience.
Infographic created by FIRST
Let’s begin with the choice of venue. Many venues have increasingly embraced sustainability in recent years by implementing eco-friendly policies. These policies can encompass a variety of measures, from adopting battery-powered or biodiesel transportation services to the installation of energy-efficient lighting and solar panels, all aimed at reducing the venue’s environmental impact. Research and inquire about a venue’s ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) or sustainability policies before making a decision.
If your event spans multiple days, selecting a venue with on-site or nearby accommodations can significantly reduce travel emissions, which often account for up to 80% of an event’s carbon footprint. Furthermore, consider offering discounted or free public transportation options for in-person attendees to further minimize their environmental impact.
In the realm of catering, food waste stands out as a significant concern during corporate events. Thankfully, there are strategies to mitigate waste without compromising the quality of the dining experience. “No-waste catering” menus, for instance, can transform food scraps into gourmet dishes, while venues can often provide meat-free or fully vegan menu options that are both delectable and visually appealing.
Consider where your caterers source their ingredients for food and beverages, including alcohol. Opting for local suppliers can substantially reduce transport emissions, support regional producers and communities and enhance the event’s sustainability. Some suppliers specialize in providing organic and biodynamic beverages crafted from seasonal produce, offering both a delightful taste and a sustainability boost.
Another critical step is to eliminate single-use plastics. Encourage attendees and on-site suppliers to join your sustainability initiative by promoting the use of refillable water bottles. This not only reduces waste but also trims expenses associated with disposable cups and waste disposal. Additionally, explore alternative, sustainably produced products to minimize the volume of items destined for landfills after the event concludes.
Sustainable event planning doesn’t need to entail additional work or inflated budgets. Consider partnering with an agency that specializes in offering strategic guidance on creating more sustainable events, all while enhancing the attendee experience and aligning with your business objectives. For additional insights and assistance, peruse the accompanying resource.