Making the decision to make your meeting as green as possible is the first big step. Now the question is where and how to begin. Here are 10 green meeting tips to get you started. You will be on your way to reduce the environmental impact of your event in no time.
- Planning a green meeting is simple and cost effective
- Focusing on sustainability is beneficial to your company’s or client’s image
- Going green provides meeting planners a competitive advantage
1. Prepare an environmental policy for your meetings
Prepare an environmental policy for your meetings and share it with all stakeholders involved: management, suppliers, delegates, presenters and exhibitors.
2. Counteract and compensate CO2 emissions
Establish a carbon-neutral initiative to compensate for the CO2 emissions resulting from your meeting. There are numerous CO2 compensation initiatives available. Tip: Calculate the CO2 emission of your event.
In addition, you can use low carbon and renewable energy and choose energy efficient and water-saving appliances.
3. Host a paperless event
Eliminate or minimize the use of paper. Think about online invitations, online registration and electronic follow up after the event. Innovations in new media and electronic technology make this easier than ever!
4. Select hotels and venues with a Green Key certificate
Select hotels and venues that apply their own green policies and practices. A simple to find out, which hotels and venues work on their sustainability efforts is the Green Key certificate. Tip: Browse through the Green Key venue finder to find suitable Green Key venues in Holland.
5. Use recycled materials, reduce waste & recycle
Buy meeting supplies from recycled materials and try to avoid as much waste as possible, for example by hosting a paperless event and using real china for all food and beverages. If you can’t avoid creating waste, make sure on-site recycling is provided for all recyclable materials.
6. Select green catering
Select local catering suppliers who follow sustainable standards and use organic ingredients. In addition, select buffet style menus and donate all leftovers charity to eliminate waste. Encourage the caterer or venue to use bulk dispensers for food and beverages.
7. Provide sustainable travel options
Make it easy for delegates to travel between the airport, hotel and meeting venue. Provide information about local public transportation or arrange carpooling shuttles. Tip: Here you can find an overview of public transportation companies in the main Dutch cities.
8. Reduce vehicle emissions
If vehicular transportation is necessary, look for vehicles with lower emissions. Choose hybrid or even electric vehicles or ones that run on natural gas, propane, methane gas or ethanol. They produce fewer emissions than petrol or diesel-fuelled vehicles.
9. Spread the word
One of the most important things that is easily forgotten is to tell everyone involved about your sustainability efforts. Share your environmental policy and asks for your stakeholders’ ones in return. Get everybody involved in the process of making your meeting green.
10. Think global, act local
Make sure to work with as many local suppliers as possible and use as many local products as you possibly can. Get your venue or a service provider like a DMC involved in the process.
Extra tip: Green social programmes
Are you planning a social programme for your delegates? You can opt for green options here as well. Many suppliers offer eco-friendly or community oriented activities. Take a look at our Top 10 Green Social Programmes.