It is becoming increasingly more important to be sustainable, particularly if you are an event planner or manager running large scale events. As humans, we generate a lot of mess and waste on a daily basis. It is well overdue that we start reducing that, but we need to be more mindful and aware about our environmental impact and the amount of ‘stuff’ we produce.
In conjunction with the environmental benefits of sustainable events, customers often expect events they attend to be more green. By showing them that this is already at the forefront of your mind, you stand yourself in a good position for people wanting to work with or purchase from you.
What is a Sustainable Event?
A sustainable event, otherwise known as a ‘green’ or ‘eco-friendly’ event, is one that takes into consideration the environmental impact it has. When planning an eco-friendly event, the idea is to waste as little energy, water and natural resources as possible.
By making your events green, you can positively affect the environment, influence others around you to do the same, as well as help promote green initiatives in your local community. If you’re looking to improve your profile with attendees, and establish yourself as an environmentally conscious event planner, then hosting a green event will aid this massively.
5 Ways to Plan an Eco-Friendly & Sustainable Event:
1. Go Paperless
One easy fix for creating a more sustainable event is to cut the amount of paper you have at your event. Go paperless; don’t give out printed handouts and leaflets. Instead opt for digital alternatives such as using capturing email addresses to send follow up information and make the most of technology to enhance attendees experience.
2. Food, Drink & Catering
To ensure the catering at your event is green, you can opt for seasonal or local food as this is less likely to leave a huge carbon footprint. Another alternative is to ‘go veggie’; this will dramatically reduce your footprint. However, if you are outsourcing the catering make sure to choose a supplier who isn’t miles away.
Although it’s essential to provide drinks (especially water) at your event, instead of supplying plastic bottles of water opt for drinking stations or tap water. You can also fill attendees glasses up on request instead of pre-filling as this will help reduce waste. If you plan on providing tea and coffee at your event, choose fair trade or sustainably sourced options.
3. Waste Management
If you are hosting a catered event, one way in which you can reduce food waste is to confirm the number of attendees beforehand. At the event itself, you can also offer attendees the opportunity to recycle their leftover food by providing compostable bins, or donate any uneaten food to charity or a food bank.
Events generate waste, one way to reduce this is to select a venue that recycles – if they don’t, you’ll need to organise this for picking up waste after an event. Another event necessity is providing recycling bins with clear labelling and signage to avoid the wrong waste being placed into the wrong bin.
You can also try banning single-use plastic bottles, or using biodegradable utensils and alternatives.
4. Transportation & Location
When selecting a venue for your event, this is a great opportunity to reduce your carbon footprint by selecting one that is close to accessible transport links. This helps to reduce the use of cars. If there are attendees travelling long distances to get to your event, you can source local restaurants, eco-friendly hotels and consider organising a shuttle service to and from the event.
5. Reduce your Carbon Footprint
We have touched upon ways to reduce your carbon footprint to create a more sustainable event, but to summarise, this is what you can do:
- Source local and seasonal food
- Reduce the use of cars by selecting a venue close to public transport
- Upcycle and reuse event decorations
- Hire furniture, crockery and utensils, don’t buy new
If you’re interested in any of the event hire services that we offer here at Jaspers Event Hire, including furniture, crockery, cutlery, glassware and kitchen equipment. Please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us by calling 01582 749 966, or through filling out our online contact form.