Friday, March 23, 2012

Go Green..and save Green! Sustainability in Meeting Planning

“If you truly want on top of what’s going on in your game, you have no choice but to engage in sustainability,” says Amy Spatrisano, co-founder of the Green Meeting Industry Council. In today’s world, it is becoming taboo to not live a sustainable lifestyle, and businesses must start considering how they too can become green in order to stay competitive.

Unfortunately, there are still many misconceptions about businesses “going green.” The Green Meeting Industry Council wants to change this by educating meeting planners on sustainable business and event practices. They offer free webinars on green events, CSR, and sustainability through their website, The Green Meeting Industry Council also holds an annual Sustainable Meetings Conference which brings together those interested in green event planning for workshops and education.

For those who may think that “going green” means spending extra green, think again! Sustainable businesses may actually end up saving money. Many planners believe green meetings cost more- however, many of the greener aspects of meetings are actually cost-savings measures: eliminating ground transportation or carpooling airport transfers, reusing signage, doing away with bottled waters… the list goes on:
-Utilize a LEED certified event space. LEED certified buildings are held to a ustainability standard based on their construction, design, and operation practices.
-Instead of providing bottled water, give participants a reusable water bottle and have water stations around your event
-Reuse signage
-Reduce the amount of papers by sending event information electronically – everyone can access it on their smartphones!
For more information on the meeting planning industry’s move to green, please check out One+ Magazine’s article “It’s Easy Being Green when You Have the Right Tools” in their March 2012 issue.

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