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Give Meetings and Events a Green Makeover

January 13, 2014

If the new year means new business endeavors and opportunities, than it likely means more meetings, events, and conventions. Getting together with colleagues, investors, and future clients may have traditionally been good business practices, but today it can also be seen as wasteful when not approached with sustainability in mind.

Before you cancel travel plans and switch conference room availability status to open, know that the EPA offers multiple resources when planning and conducting events with sustainability in mind. Try a few of the highlighted following tips to give get-togethers an environmentally friendly makeover.

  • Plan to Be Socially Responsible: Don’t let generated waste be an afterthought of your event management. Instead, make it the basis for all decisions made regarding the event. Know in advance what materials being used for set up, take down, and event execution can be reused, resold, or recycle. If some trash will be landfill bound, look for alternatives instead.
  • Be Strategic: While you may not be able to create a zero-waste event, focus your sustainability efforts on those that best align with company goals and client beliefs.
  • Location, Location, Location: Select a venue that meets your sustainability needs. Make sure the contractors you use are aware of your goals to be more environmentally conscious and will partner with you to achieve the same results.
  • Leverage Technology: If you’re meeting with a small group, consider e-meetings instead of face-to-face. You’ll save money and waste on travel and accommodations, as well as people’s time, which may be even more valuable to many.
  • Smart Travel Options: When travel is a must, offer visitors sustainable options. Reduce the distance traveled, if possible, and encourage carpooling or group commuting opportunities. If long distances will be a must, choose venues in vacation destinations and recommend travelers get a little R&R with loved ones while in attendance. A combination of business and leisure may eliminate vacation travel for attendees at another time.
  • Reduce Materials: Offer brochures, programs, and other paper collateral as electronic documents instead of physical copies. Attendees will appreciate having less in-hand materials, and may be more likely to review and refer to later if they can access it from their smart devices. For materials that can’t be digitized, use recycled materials, print on both sides of paper, and reduce pages and paper size whenever possible.
  • Offer Sustainable Learning Opportunities: Education is often the first step toward change. Help attendees understand your organization’s sustainability goals by offering lectures, demonstrations, and resources that promote how they too can be sustainable themselves.

The waste you generate is greater than your daily business operations and the services and products your provide. Remember that to be truly sustainable, strategies needs to expand your entire business. Hazardous Waste Experts can help you identify where waste management solutions can better your business – call us today at 800-936-2311.

Disposal of hazardous waste doesn’t have to be painful.