Event Planning

For any association, organising member events is a fundamental part of its role: annual conferences/trade expos/webinars/networking events/meetings and so on.

Two key factors go to being climate-wise:

  • It’s vital to incorporate climate and sustainability content in association events
  • Prioritise sustainability in choice of venue, equipment and materials
Including climate and emissions reduction topics in your event program
Incorporate climate and sustainability as a key theme or at the very least, a featured agenda item.  Interactive sessions that directly engage participants are the most relatable and valuable. Attendees should leave an event with ideas and motivation to act.
  • Event theme or streams
  • Program/agenda items
  • Information sessions
  • Panel presentations and discussion
  • Keynotes
  • Expert guest speakers
  • Stakeholder presentations
  • Member showcases
  • Service provider exhibits
  • Practical workshops
  • Mentor/buddy pairing sessions
  • Breakout sessions
  • Pre-event sessions
  • Dinner speakers
  • Training sessions
successful report presentation
Venue and equipment choice
Virtual conferences and training often replace in-person events. Choosing this option when possible can help associations reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with travel and venues.
For live events, it’s important to choose a venue based on its sustainability credentials. Any in-person event has potential to impact the environment, especially one that involves high attendance numbers or large exhibition space.
Another major part of the exhibition is booth builds. It’s estimated that 90% of the conventional materials used for custom stand building is dumped in the mixed residual waste, ending up in landfill.
Choosing a venue with good sustainability management will not only be climate-wise for your association, but will also be good marketing.
Selecting accommodation for event participants should also be based on good climate-wise credentials.
Event associations’ leadership and resources
Australia’s event associations are being proactive in promoting good policy and practice.

Meeting and Events Australia has said ‘Sustainability is not a gimmick … It is a priority. We can all make a difference and the events industry needs to play its part in reducing the impacts of events on the planet.’

SEA provides guidelines on reusable material and products and training courses in how to manage sustainable events through the Institute for Sustainable Events  These are based on international standard ISO 20121 Event Sustainability Management Systems, which is available to purchase through any standards store.

The Professional Conference Organisers Association chose its 2022 conference venue with sustainability front of mind.

The Exhibition and Event Association has a sustainability pledge for its members.
All associations would know that decisions can be more confidently made by directing business to members of respected associations, such as in this case, event associations.

The race to cut 50% emissions by 2030 is on!

Remember every kilogram saved from being released, is one less causing catastrophic weather.