Keys to achieve a more sustainable event
Nowadays, we are all aware of our own personal responsibility in the care of the environment, we are aware of its importance. Besides, experts assure us we can redress many of the consequences of those past actions that have paid scant favour to the health of the planet. Which is why, as we have said on other occasions, it is in our hands to take up the reins and have a proactive attitude towards all environmental issues that, of course, affect us ALL.
In our sector, we are lucky to be able to “preach by example” for the consciousness of sustainability to become more widely spread. Which is why we want to share the aspect we consider key to lending our grain of sand, both minimizing the environmental impact on our event and to further spread that consciousness of sustainability we have mentioned.
Minimising the environmental impact
One of the areas in which we have to be most responsible is in our own impact on our surroundings. It is not the same to say and do what you say as to say one thing and do another. Consequently, our message begins by ensuring that the programme we organise is as sustainable as possible, whether visible or not. For example, when choosing the catering we shall opt for the one that works with local produce. The participants are not going to know this if we do not tell them but, whether it is evident or not, our sustainable conscience is guiding this event.
Once we have done our homework, then we shall look at imparting what we want to transmit. We shall emphasise that one of our objectives of the event in question is to create greater consciousness of this issue before us. That is how it will be focussed on the participants. We shall not reach people in the same way if we tell, rather than if we do not tell them. On communicating our objectives we focus attention on these aspects which, for sure, in many people and many circumstances, would have passed unnoticed.
When organising our events we can resort to doing or not doing certain things. And, that is what we are going to look at now.
Look for suitable contributors
We are always going to surround ourselves with the best and most suitable suppliers to provide a perfect service. However, for our event to be as sustainable as we wish it to be, we cannot relax on this issue. The best will be those that inspire confidence and who, we also know, will fit in perfectly with the line of sustainability.
We refer, as an example to the catering, restaurants, activities, meeting venues, hotels.. all of which can have or not a more or less sustainable activity, and that is what we are appraising.
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Reduce to the maximum the amount of residue
And we are not only speaking of rubbish here, for as we know where there is a large gathering of people, rubbish is almost inevitable, but we are also referring to oil. Because we can, for example, reduce the number of transfers by grouping people together. If these transfers can be done on foot or by bike we are going to encourage this option using, if we want to make it more pleasant, a guided activity, like a tour.
To reduce residue it is important, above all, to recycle and use re-usable material. No single use plastics, which go totally against our objectives. Recycle and re-use is the key to reduce to the maximum the amount of residue. We must not forget to inform the participants of this intention. If we do not, we shall not come close to recycling or re-using in the same way as if we give precise instructions: “re-use your glass” or “take these containers to such a place in the room”.
Reduce the number of resources
A little of the same from the previous point. For example, paper disappears from the scene to give way to mobile apps. We are all perfectly connected and can be well informed via our mobile devices. And, in this way, printing disappears!
In the same way, we are going to encourage open spaces that do not need artificial light. This option is always highly appreciated. We all undoubtedly like more open air space. Therefore, now we are in Spain and here we have a natural resource that is available almost all year round, that does not contaminate and also does not cost us any money, and that resource is the sun. We are going to take advantage of this great benefit. In any case if, due to the format of our event, due to the time or any other factor, this is not possible, we shall use LED lighting. The idea, basically, is to save energy in favour of the use of renewable energies.
Choose a suitable backdrop
In order to reach our objective successfully, minimising our impact, one of the most important things is the choice of the environment in which we are going to hold our event. In the majority of events in the MICE sector, we refer to environments, in the plural, within the one same event, usually because they extend over several days.
What do we mean by this? Well, respect the environment, not appropriate space from nature but adapt ourselves to it and leave it exactly the way we found it when we arrived….. ¡or in even better condition! For example, if we have an activity on the beach, when we leave, it should be as if we had not been there. And the same with every natural space we use.
A choice within reach of everybody
With these four fundamental aspects, we believe we have a good starting point to create more sustainable events. Where there is a will, there is a way, and to improve the situation regarding the environment is up to all of us.
So, we have shared some ideas but we must all provide something. We would love to know what you come up with to further the consciousness of sustainability at events, so we invite you to leave your comments, which will help to enrich all those reading this post.
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With a career of over 12 years dedicated to the Tourism Sector and specially to the Meetings and Events Sector, in this blog I share with you all that I consider interesting to bring value to our work. It is sometimes difficult to follow a world moving at such a rapid pace. Stop for a second and navigate these sites written for you. Have a nice day!