Become a Green Meeting Ninja

By Stephanie Purcell

In a recent blog post we talked all about Bullfrog Power and contributing Green Energy to your event. Energy is a great start but you can also contribute to ‘going green’ with a few other simple strategies.

The Menu

Buy local! Get creative and consider local shops, bakeries, locally grown produce and increased vegetarian selections. This makes a big impact on your local economy. “A Lighter Footprint” is an article I read recently in SmartMeetings’ magazine and has some insight into this. “…the fewer animal-based items served at a meeting, the lower the carbon emissions required to provide attendees’ meals.”

The Travel

On average, 75% of an event’s pollution footprint is through travel. While flights may be the most realistic or only option, you can also consider other modes of transportation like trains or a car pool system. Not only will it help the environment with less emissions, it will save you money! Event planners could consider an added incentive to delegates travelling by offering discounts, perks, or upgrades for those who chose to “go green” in their travel expenditures.

The Venue

If at all possible, choose a location that is centralized for your guests. Not only will this improve the attendance outcome, but will also reduce transportation emissions. Ensure proper disposal of waste, compost and recycling. Try going paper-less by making speaker handouts and event agendas available online.

The Water

And an easy one of course is to scrap the bottled water and set up water stations. Encourage attendees to bring reusable water bottles or have eco-friendly reusable cups available. These stations are a great sponsorship opportunity for a company to showcase their brand and take care of some costs for the event’s bottom line budget. Check out some photos from a Toronto water supplier; Water on Wheels

For even more ideas I would encourage you to have a look at the website for Green Meeting Ninjas. Sustainable events made easy. What’s not to love?! They talk about how they “strive to develop tools and resources that can empower professionals to plan sustainable events and green meetings with greatest of ease.”