Are you looking to organise an eco friendly conference? The good news is that there are a number of easy changes you can implement to improve the sustainability of your next conference.
This is an excellent first step to improving the long-term environmental impact of your business and can help your business to stand out from your competitors by prioritising sustainable practices.
Demand is rising for event organisers to consider their impact on the environment and is becoming the standard so delegates expect certain eco policies to be in place. So if you’re looking for help in this area, explore our easy changes below.
How to Make Your Conference More Eco Friendly
Wondering how you can make your conference eco-friendly? Try these easy changes that you can make that will help you work towards an eco-friendly conference:
- Opt for digital rather than printed resources
- Choose a green venue
- Reduce waste & single-use plastic
- Sustainable Catering
No we don’t mean online events, we understand the value of in-person events at The Venues Collection but there are a number of easy changes you can make to improve the eco-friendliness of your next conference.
Firstly, ditch printed resources. In a world where almost everyone has access to a smartphone, laptop or tablet, why waste money on printing materials such as brochures, schedules or floor maps? Don’t stop there, explore e-ticket options, encouraging people to have tickets ready on their phones or opt for recyclable badges, there are lots of options available online!
Not only is this going to put budget towards more important areas of your conference but it’s also beneficial for the environment.
Similarly, are you printing promotional material that ends up on the floor or in the bin? Are you printing giant banners that cost money and the earth? Create a buzz around your eco friendly event online by promoting through social media and why not partner with a large company in your industry that can help to boost the visibility of your conference?
Take it one step further and opt for a hybrid event. Hybrid events allow delegates to attend your conference from further afield without the need to travel in person and avoid putting additional pressure on the environment.
Choose an Eco-Friendly Conference Venue Green Venue
If you’re looking to hold an eco friendly conference, consider choosing the right venue.
By partnering with an eco friendly conference venue you immediately improve the sustainability of your conference and will find great support from the venue and their event coordinators due to their “built in” sustainable services which will help you to continue with the green initiative for your conference.
For a guide to choosing a sustainable venue why not check out The Venues Collection’s article on Sustainability Made Easy or for a list of what to look for when choosing an eco friendly conference venue, check out our Guide To Sustainable Events.
When trying to plan an eco friendly conference you should also consider transport links to your chosen venue. Is the venue accessible by public transport? Does the venue offer car charging points? Do you have room in your budget or could you add an additional charge to offer a pollution-cutting transport option to your event from key areas that you know a large number of delegates will be arriving from?
Consider venues whose meeting rooms offer natural light and good heating/air conditioning solutions, we understand the British weather isn’t always reliable but opting for a venue with large windows is an easy way to use natural light to cut down on electricity at your event. One easy way you can check this is to find out if air conditioning is set at a sensible level to make sure everyone is comfortable rather than using lots of energy by blasting out cold air.
One of the easiest ways to reduce waste is to avoid using single-use plastic at your event.
Encourage people to bring water bottles and offer refill stations. Why not offer tea and coffee in reusable mugs rather than paper cups and remove straws from your event. These are all easy ways to reduce single-use materials to work towards an eco-friendly conference.
If you don’t think you can completely move away from single-use resources at your event why not look into compostable options or those made from recyclable materials that can also be recycled once used.
One of the easiest ways to reduce waste is to opt for recyclable or compostable materials.
Food & Drink
Food and beverages are a key part of any conference and is one of the best ways to improve the sustainability of your event.
Firstly food should be served in eco-conscious packaging, whether that’s freshly cooked food served on reusable crockery or compostable food boxes.
Secondly, there are a number of caterers available that use a sustainable approach to ensure you’re getting food that is tasty and good for the planet. If you partner with an eco friendly conference venue, they may offer sustainable food as part of their conference package so this is an excellent thing to ask about when considering what venue to choose.
At Yarnfield Park, the carbon emissions of each dish are calculated to help you make the best decision for you and for the planet, we call this carbon labelling.
Another thing you should be asking when talking to sustainable caterers is how they reduce their food waste or what they do with the waste from their food prep. This will give you an insight into how serious the caterer is about their green practices.
Easy Changes to Make Your Conference More Eco-Friendly
When planning an eco friendly conference it’s important to partner with eco friendly businesses that understand what you’re trying to achieve. Above lists a range of areas that you can look into yourself to improve the sustainability of you conference or you can work with event professionals who specialise in greener conferences and meetings.
At Yarnfield Park, sustainability is at the top of our agenda. We’re part of The Venues Collection who offer a variety of green event venues across the UK and have put eco friendly practices in place including our Green Meetings initiative and our Future First Charter which includes our ‘Meetings For Change’ and ‘Menu For Change’ initiatives.
Promoting sustainability is easy at Yarnfield Park, explore our conference venue facilities.