Meeting planners have a large impact on the sustainability of a meeting, as you are usually the ones deciding the where, when, what, and how. With sustainability and “going green” becoming more popular every year, it is becoming easier to make your meetings greener.
To help you in your quest, GSN has provided you with a printable ‘Green’ checklist you can use in the meeting planning process. These questions will help you define what ‘green’ means for your meeting and help you get to know some of the green meetings options currently available. As you go through each section, use the Green Meetings Resource to gain additional insight or ideas. All options have been sourced from meetings or venues that have already implemented them.
10 Green Suggestions for your next meeting:
- Create sustainable goals and COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE!
- Choose a venue that has an Environmental Policy or defined sustainability practices
- Have a recycling program, either with the venue or as a meeting initiative
- Give precedence to recycled and local materials when making supply purchases
- If using disposable cutlery, utilize ONE universal type (recyclable or compostable), so that all items go in the same bin
- Provide eco-friendly transportation options (i.e. ride shares, public transport, etc.) or off-set travel costs through company partnerships
- Make printed meeting materials optional and have them available for download or email
- Sponsor non-plastic reusable water bottles for attendees or encourage they bring their own
- Serve local/regional/seasonal, buffet-style cuisine
- Implement a donation plan for left-over meeting materials and food
Additional suggestion for meetings with vendors or large set-up: Host an area for vendors to donate reusable materials (cardboard boxes, pallets, or containers) for other vendors to use.
Lastly, share your green meeting with GSN! We love sharing ideas and practices that our members have implemented for the good of our people and our planet. We are not alone in our quest and look forward to seeing your green meeting come to life.