While events were making a come back sometime in mid-2021, the alleged spread of omicron via the NYC anime convention in November, quickly dissipated the trend. The events management industry is facing great challenges because the road to recovery is not just a matter of picking up where they left off prior to the pandemic. While it’s great news that sustainable event management is on the rise, carrying on has become an even greater challenge for the industry than it was before the pandemic.
Two years ago in the UK, event managers had ranked sustainable event management as their second biggest challenge. It’s possible that the status quo is similar in other countries, as populations now have greater awareness and consideration for the environment. In Australia, 70% of Australians who responded to a survey said they prefer sustainable products and that future events will be sustainable. Apparently, people would look forward to seeing sustainable event management as the prevailing agenda.
The sustainability Values of Virtual or Online Events
As the omicron variant continues to spread in nearly all countries, virtual events are still the appropriate sustainable approach in the event management industry. Not only are they safer and easier to host if compared to conventional events, they are also easier for guests to attend.
The return on investments of virtual events are greater as they need less budget. It has many other benefits aside from virtual events being sustainable including not needing venues, removing travel costs, and eliminating waste produced in events.
Some Suggestions on How to Plan Sustainable Events
The goal of sustainable event management is to significantly lessen the impact of environmental harm. Conferences, conventions,meets, festivals and similar grand gatherings must be well planned to keep sustainability values and ethics in place during the holding of events. Good budgeting and cost-effective planning, including protecting the grounds with coverings similar to crane matting are important to ensure sustainability at all times.
Below are some ways a sustainable event can be held:
Holding the event in a location that is accessible by way of eco-friendly transport like bikes, hybrid taxis, electric cars, and buses, as well as carpooling when possible.
Choose an eco-friendly venue in the sense that it meets sustainability standard, including having sorting stations and recycling centres, energy-efficient appliances, and filtered water stations.
Reduce plastic and food wastes by using eco-friendly cutlery and biodegradable cups. Support local foods to minimise packaging as well. Offer plant-based meals and other special dietary requirements to lessen the amount of food wastes.
Use and generate individual QR codes when accepting attendees instead of using printed tickets.
Have a waste management plan ready if the venue simply relies on the scheduled community garbage pick ups. Encourage attendees to adhere to them instead.
Reduce water and energy consumption. A venue that monitors energy usage of the event through smart energy consumption would be preferable. This includes smart digital thermostats and automated lights-off switches in rooms.