Although the industry has been talking about this for a long time, there isn’t one place to go to see the standards and certifications for going green. This blog brings the event information to you, will help you wade through it and gives you a few simple steps to bring your meeting to a more sustainable level.


APEX/ASTM Environmentally Sustainable Meeting Standards

The Convention Industry Council and ASTM International teamed up to complete nine individual standards (displayed in the diagram above) and recognized through an ANSI-accredited international standards setting organization. They address every scope of the meeting and event planning process and each standard can be purchased through the ASTM website.

ISO 20121

This system standard has been designed to help organizations in the events industry improve the sustainability of their event related activities, products and services.

ISO 20121 applies to all types and sizes of organization involved in the events industry – from caterers, lighting and sound engineers, security companies, stage builders and venues to independent event organizers and corporate and public sector event teams.

CERTIFICATION: Certificate in Sustainable Event Planning

The Green Meeting Industry Council, in partnership with Twirl Management,offers the Certificate in Sustainable Event Planning  as a 360-degree learning environment to create a new class of sustainable event practitioners. The students are responsible for the successful implementation of the sustainable event initiatives.

In addition these standards and certifications, here are four things you can do to be greener:

  1. Go for destinations that have high walkability scores. 
    There are several advantages to this – cuts down on transportation charges, attendees get out and exercise and they can obtain a first hand view of the city – which may incent them to come back to it.
  2. Choose local. 
    From renting audio visual equipment to speakers and entertainment, you will save a lot of money on shipping, storage, and accommodations – all which have an impact on the environment. In addition, you will be helping out the local economy and keeping the tax dollars local, as well.
  3. No more paper. No more bags. No more promotional items. 
    Rent iPads to handle all your paper. Wireless Audience Response Systems are perfect for surveys. Plastic bags are not biodegradable so stop giving them away with marketing materials. Put all marketing docs on a Digital Document Library if you are an exhibitor. Stop ordering cute little giveaways that will be thrown out at the end of the conference.
  4. Reuse and recycle. 
    Use china, silverware and glassware in place paper or Styrofoam products.
    Use linens – both tablecloths and napkins.
    Put a living plant in the middle of each table and encourage the venue to use it again.
    Set up recycling stations all around the venue for cans and plastic bottles.

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