Green Events – Does it work?
Sustainability – THE THEME which is strongly in focus in everyday life, but also becomes more and more important for so-called Green Events. The event industry sees itself as a pioneer in paying attention to its carbon footprint. After all, digitalization has been implemented at turbo speed in this industry.
Today we explain how large and small events can be made more sustainable and what to look out for.
The 3-pillar model
Green Events are based on the so-called 3-pillar model of sustainability. But what is that exactly?
The model explains sustainability with three pillars: ecology, economy and social.
The Corporate Responsibility (CRS) of a company, in our case an event organizer, describes the areas in which this model should be implemented.
Ecological sustainability aims at the preservation of nature. Here, for example, care is taken to use resources that regenerate quickly or to switch to renewable energies and the use of environmentally friendly products.
Economic sustainability means that a company or an event does not only aim at profits, but also takes care that the future has a high quality of life for following generations. In short, it means that high quality means lower costs. Well-trained employees, for example, treat technical material with care, which is why it functions significantly longer.
The goal of social sustainability is, among other things, a high level of occupational safety for employees, intergenerational distributive justice, gender equality and inclusion.
So a company is ecological if it is economic and social. It is important to live not only the ecological component, but also the economic and social components.
In this interplay, the Three Pillars represent an exemplary approach to sustainability. All well and good in theory, but what does it look like in practice? Can the three areas be reconciled, or are there perhaps problems in doing so?
Our sustainability tips and tricks for the next event!
Not only on the day of the event itself can sustainable action be taken, but also in the preparation phase there are so many things that can be considered! In order to work sustainably, organizers should also communicate their intentions to their team and define what the sustainability goals are for the event project. This, in turn, translates into external communication.
In the preparation phase, paper can be reduced by making documents available digitally for the most part, but if something does need to be printed, then double-sided and with recycled paper.
In times of a pandemic, meetings with suppliers, colleagues and other stakeholders no longer have to take place in an office. For example, long journeys by train, car or bus are no longer necessary, which would increase individual CO2 emissions. So the digital turnaround is already a good opportunity for a sustainable get-together here.
A successful event always includes a memorable meal. When it comes to catering, things are quite clear: seasonal and regional is the tone here! Additionally, a predominantly vegetarian menu can be beneficial.
The packaging of food and drinks should be reduced to the bare minimum, for example through sustainable lunch boxes or portioned food at the buffet. Tableware should not be plastic, not only because of its short shelf life.
On-site waste reduction is key to well-functioning waste management. Ecologically beneficial packaging is the solution here. In addition, waste should not only be separated at home, but also at an event.
Events, huge power guzzlers? There is another way!
When it comes to technology, even simple tips can reduce CO2 emissions. Energy-saving devices are the be-all and end-all of a green event, as is their correct use. When it comes to rehearsals, you can follow the schedule. This avoids long waiting times or idle periods, during which the respective equipment continues to draw power without being used efficiently.
You should make it attractive and possible for your visitors to travel easily by public transport. A ticket for public transport included in the admission price helps here. Charging points for electric cars are a nice plus for e-car drivers and round off the event experience perfectly.
“Why don’t you take an information brochure with you!”
We all know the phrase from trade shows and exhibitions, for example. You come back and you’ve brought home a bunch of “stuff”. Brochures, pens, key chains, sweets,…the list is long and often these goodies (unfortunately) end up in the trash pretty quickly.
Information brochures but also index cards can nowadays easily and quickly be replaced by QR codes. This saves paper and is also much more effective, because the deposited information comes directly into digital use. Networking can be created quickly and easily via a direct link.
Instead of giving away plastic culis, recycled notebooks and weekly planners are much more eco-friendly and always go down well with customers. Plants, water bottles or recycled tote bags bring joy to visitors and are also used more often. Or how about products made of felt? This is sure to set you apart from the other companies and create a lasting memory with customers with a positive reference to the company’s climate-friendly attitude.
You can only win…
The topic of sustainability and Green Events is an important part of the event industry and will become a key focus when designing events in the future. There are many benefits to be gained, not only significant CO2 savings, but also social aspects such as inclusion and occupational health and safety. Product sourcing, catering and careful waste management are essential for a green event. The fact is, any event can be made sustainable and doesn’t have to be more expensive. It just requires proper planning, good communication and as with any event, of course, creativity!