And managing the carbon footprint of your event

Transport pollution, waste production, water and energy consumption – what practices should you adopt in order to organise a sustainable event? BCL seeks to promote more responsible business tourism and offers you solutions to limit the impacts of these factors.

Last updated date : 07/09/2021

Organising an environmentally friendly event means being aware of these aspects and taking into account the long-term impact of your event on the environment, people and local economy, by adopting a model stance and anticipating any negative effects.

Here are a few practices for a responsibly-organised event :

  1. Consider sustainability right from the outset of your planning. 
  2. Involve staff and other stakeholders in identifying key areas and setting targets for your event. 
  3. Cooperate with the venue and suppliers to make your event as sustainable as possible. 
  4. Analyse your suppliers’ purchasing practices and set standards for them to meet. 
  5. Encourage others to talk about your aspirations and what you are doing. 
  6. Measure and evaluate your outcomes. 

You can also calculate the carbon footprint of your event on the GoodPlanet Foundation website and consult Eco-Evénement’s (a group of seven associations in the events sector) eco-guide, which lists all the tools and resources that allow you to limit the impact of your event. 

We also provide a checklist of questions that you should ask yourself throughout the organisation of your event : 

Transport and travel: 

Is the venue for your event ideally located in terms of access to public or soft transport?
Have you thought to tell participants about the green transport options available?
Will you offset participants’ carbon emissions arising from their travel to and from the event?

Food and drink:

Find out the following from your venue: 

  • Is priority given to local, seasonal produce? 
  • Is the food served organic, eco-friendly or fair-trade?  
  • Is the water provided tap water rather than bottled water? 
  • Is food waste composted?
  • Is the crockery and cutlery reusable? 
  • Are individually packaged foods avoided?
  • Are actions in place to reduce food waste?

Purchasing and waste: 

  • Do you choose local suppliers that meet environmental standards? 
  • Do you keep purchasing to a minimum, and reuse and recycle wherever possible?  
  • Are any printed materials on recycled paper?
  • Do you use reusable displays, banners and name badges?
  • Do you have a system for sorting recyclable waste? 

Venue and hotel: 

  • Does the venue or hotel have an environmental label or certification? If applicable, has it put in place good sustainable development practices ?
  • Does the venue or hotel have written environmental goals and an action plan on how to achieve them ?
  • Does the venue or hotel’s purchasing policy give priority to environmentally friendly products ? 
  • Does the venue or hotel serve organic or locally sourced food and drinks ?
  • Does the venue or hotel have disabled access ?

Activities and entertainment: 

  • Do you plan to incorporate social aspects in your event (combating discrimination, activities involving charities, etc.)? 
  • Will you offer activities that have a positive impact on participants (well-being, sport, etc.)? 
  • Will you be promoting local heritage (local or traditional skills, cultural tours, etc.)? 
To guide you through this process, BCL also offers you solutions for organising an environmentally-responsible event in Lyon. See our To-Do List

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