An eco-friendly lifestyle means always choosing the greener option, especially when planning large events. Corporate events, in particular, can be a huge source of carbon emissions when not planned accordingly. Fortunately, when you know the basics of what makes a successful event, planning one with sustainability in mind doesn’t have to be a hassle.
This article will explain the fundamentals of planning an eco-friendly corporate event and how to give your attendees the ultimate experience without sacrificing the environment.
What is An Eco-Friendly Event?
As the need for environmental sustainability increases, being mindful of our impact on the environment is crucial. Eco-friendly events strive to minimize the amount of waste and carbon emissions put out before and during the event.
In any large-group setting where the carbon footprint is greater, it’s important to consider environmental impact. That means intentionally choosing the most sustainable option throughout each event process, including catering and destination, all the way down to small details like forks and napkins.
5 Steps to Going Green at Your Corporate Events
Planning your next eco-friendly corporate event can be a breeze when done the right way. In these five steps, you can learn to satisfy your attendees while prioritizing sustainability.
1. Plan sustainably from the beginning
If you want to have an eco-friendly event, your entire planning process should be green-focused. That means even planning how you’re going to plan – but don’t worry, it’s not as daunting as it seems.
The planning process itself can be an opportunity to seek out eco-friendly options. For instance, you may consider whether in-person planning is necessary or if it can be done over a video call. Hosting virtual planning meetings instead of in-person can reduce emissions from commutes and make it easier for everyone involved.
2. Cut down on travel time
When choosing your event’s location, there are several things to keep in mind. Travel methods and commute times can play a huge factor in your event’s eco-friendly rating.
The average passenger vehicle emits 0.78 pounds of carbon dioxide per mile, meaning a 30-mile drive back and forth would emit up to a whopping 47 pounds of CO2. If possible, use your workplace as a starting point and stick to locations that require less of a drive.
If you are planning for multiple locations, consider these questions: Are they within close travelling distance to each other? How will your guests arrive at each site (e.g. car, bus, walking)? If it’s not possible to host an event closer to the workplace, can you plan a group commute (i.e. a carpooling service) to help cut down on carbon emissions?
3. Eliminate single-use waste
Large corporate events can be major sources of litter, especially if single-use plastics are involved. Replacing common plastics like cutlery and replacing them with reusable alternatives or eco-friendly bamboo cutlery can significantly reduce your event’s carbon footprint. Small switches can make a huge difference, such as sending invitations online instead of on paper or using a communal water pitcher rather than handing out plastic water bottles.
If it seems like too much to eliminate all single-use wastes at your event, ensure there are enough well-labelled bins around the venue for attendees to throw away their waste and recycling. Keeping garbage to a minimum and in designated areas while encouraging attendees to recycle wherever possible helps reduce the event’s pollution output.
4. Offer sustainable food and drinks
Food production is one of the greatest sources of pollution. Since corporate events usually have some kind of refreshment available, the type of food and drinks served can affect an event’s sustainability.
Consider hiring a catering company that provides sustainably farmed, certified organic food. Ask your venue what they offer and what sustainable practices they follow in the kitchen, such as composting organics or buying from local vendors.
Paying mind to the carbon footprint of specific foods served at your event is also a reasonable measure. For instance, one pound of beef takes nearly 1,800 gallons of water and 22 pounds of carbon to produce. Opting for more plant-based dishes or a Meatless Monday menu can help decrease your event’s carbon footprint.
5. Choose an eco-friendly venue
Choosing the right venue is one of the most important factors when planning your eco-friendly corporate event. After all, this is where all your planning comes to life, and choosing a sustainable venue sets a firm base for your eco-friendly event.
When choosing the property, look for venues with credentials and third-party sustainability certifications. If you know some people attending this event are travelling from out of town, the next step would be to ensure that the hotels in the area are also sustainably-certified.
Let everyone involved in the planning process know that you are looking for venues that cater to the environment so they can plan accordingly. Offer suggestions and tips to people on what to look for, such as a specific certification or feature.
Even if the venue you choose isn’t environmentally-certified, many venues will accommodate your sustainable needs. Contact your nearest venue and see what options they have available for including you in the planning process.
Booking Your Eco-Friendly Corporate Event
If you require a sustainable venue for an upcoming event, Chateau Le Jardin could be just what you are looking for.
Our luxurious event space is situated in the GTA and at the heart of Vaughan, making it easily accessible to workplaces in the area. We offer services catered to your every need, including eco-friendly events. Our team of talented professionals plans with you involved, ensuring the day of your event runs smoothly.