Events as a Force for Good

Holistic Sustainability in the Events Industry

We collaborated with our partners emc3 to bring you an exclusive white paper: Events as a Force for Good. At from now, we believe in a holistic approach to sustainability: social, environmental and economic. This white paper explores the unique position that the events and hospitality sector has to make a real difference.

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Executive Summary

The events industry is known to be a hugely environmentally damaging sector due to its heavy reliance on natural resources and its throwaway culture; UK festivals alone are reported to generate 25,800 tonnes of waste and 24,261 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year (Vision 2025, 2020). Statistics from MeetGreen paint a similarly bleak picture stating that each conference attendee can produce approximately 2 kilograms of waste and over 180 kilograms of CO2 emissions a day (McGee, 2016). Further studies have found that international conferences, on account of the travel, are even more polluting, capable of creating more than 2,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases, which is equivalent to the emissions of 270 UK citizens for a whole year (Bernoville, 2022).

And these emission rates are concerning because global temperatures are rising. However, academics recognise a key opportunity for the events industry to pave the way for a sustainable future for the planet; by creating a legacy of change, including protecting natural resources, nurturing communities and promoting equality for all (Jones, 2017).

This white paper explores the evidence and arguments for why monumental change is needed so imminently and propose select examples for the events industry that can blend with the excellent initiatives and proposals already underway so that life on the planet, in all its fullness, can be protected and sustained.

About the Author

Emily Maule

Emily joined emc3 in 2022 after more than a decade in education, championing educational inequality, managing highly successful teams and leading pioneering curriculum design at a national scale. And now, she’s bringing this strategic approach to the events industry, to advance people’s understanding around goal-setting and audience behaviour.

Want to find out more about what industry leaders are doing to make events more sustainable?

You can download a full copy of our white paper here.

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