Not just a fad or something that ticks the CSR box, doing all we can to ensure events don’t (literally) cost the earth is critical business for us all. Increasingly clients and delegates are looking to us event professionals to advise upon and take actions to reduce the environmental impact of events. And rightly so. It is all of our responsibility to do whatever we can.
Here are the 5 ways we work to ensure more environmentally sustainable events.
1. Think planet early
Being thoughtful about reducing harm to the planet changes the decisions we make when designing, developing and delivering an event. If we thinking about the environmental impact early on in the project lifecycle, we are less likely to design something that is unnecessarily harmful by accident.
2. Make it business as usual
It is important to dedicate time to understanding and planning to reduce the environmental impact of an event. Don’t just add it on to the end of a project meeting or allow it to become a general discussion point without action and follow up. Make time and get the whole project team together to work on it in dedicated meetings and don’t let people veer off to discuss other aspects of the event. Assign a dedicated environmental action group or individual to challenge decisions and practices, support everyone’s learning and hold each other to account. Find practical ways to ensure that working to reduce the environmental impact across all we do is core business.
3. Talk about it
It is the responsibility of the planner to ensure that customers are aware of the environmental impact of their event and to advise on what can be done to reduce that impact. We must do the research and present suitable alternatives to our customers and use our industry knowledge and expertise to support better decisions.
4. Think before you buy or bin
The absolute best thing we can all do is reduce the amount of waste we produce. Whether it’s an exhibition carpet or event catering, everyone in the event supply chain should be seeking to reuse something that already exists, pay supplies forward and take responsibility for recycling. Say no to single use. There are lots of alternatives to single use and it is the planner’s responsibility to identify the most appropriate options and work through the logistics to make these options a reality.
5. Do something!
No matter the level of experience and knowledge on making events more sustainable - just do something. If this is something you’ve never really thought of before don’t feel bad about that, just get on with making it a priority to improve understanding and practice to reduce the environmental impact of events. Learn from others, do research and do what you can. We can all be better today than we were yesterday and that can make a huge difference to our planet and communities. Don’t get overwhelmed, take forward steps and keep going and let’s make sure all our events don’t cost the earth.
Charm Event Directors is a full-service event consultancy with a mission to create exceptional experiences that have a lasting impact…every time. Our expertise is in strategic creative event production that gives you the confidence to engage, activate and appreciate in a meaningful and authentic way. Whatever you need you can trust us to design, plan and deliver a memorable experience for you and your audience. Find out more