According to the United Nations, half of all plastic produced is designed to be used once and then thrown away, taking centuries to degrade. In fact, experts are warning that if we don’t act, the amount of plastic in our oceans will outweigh the fish by 2050.
And it’s not just plastic that’s the problem. Deforestation, fossil fuels and farming are all contributing to an increase in greenhouse gases, and we’re seeing global warming, extreme weather and rising sea levels as a result.
It’s time we all made a few changes – and there are plenty of steps you can take to help make a difference.
Here are a few ways you can cut the carbon footprint of your next event…
1. Pledge to cut back on plastics. And definitely ban plastic straws. They’re one of the most common items that end up littering the environment, and due to their size and shape, they’re often tricky for the machines at recycling plants to pick up. At CCT Venues we’re replacing all our branded plastic pens with ones made renewable natural fibres. They’re every bit as good as plastic pens. The only difference is they’ll degrade naturally when they’ve run out of ink, rather than adding to landfill.
2. Provide delegates with refillable glass water bottles or jugs of fresh water (UK tap water is fine to drink), rather than a water cooler with plastic cups. At CCT Venues, we provide filtered water in refillable glass bottles for all events.
3. Push public transport. Choose venues close to transport links so that your guests can leave the car at home and cut back on pollution. All our venues are within a five-minute walk from a Tube station, so your delegates can have an easy journey with no petrol required.
4. Reuse wherever you can. Hang on to name badge-holders. Create signs and poster that will work for more than one occasion. Take care of your display items so you can use them again and again. You’ll soon find that cutting back on consumption helps cut back costs too. CCT Venues-Docklands has digital room signs which clients can use, avoiding waste completely.
5. Be as paperless as possible. Make sure you share the agenda and any important materials for your conference or meeting online, so delegates can view it onscreen rather than needing to print out lengthy documents.
6. Work with suppliers who have stringent sustainable sourcing credentials. Our own Head Chef Jamian Lewis is passionate about choosing seasonal ingredients from farmers or suppliers with humane, ethical and environmentally sound practices in place. And we’re constantly learning more about how to make our business kinder to the planet. Recently our Operations Director James Russ joined fellow members of the IACC (International Association of Conference Centres) to visit Sweden where they learned about the fascinating sustainable sourcing practices in place at venues across the country. Read his diary from the trip here.
7. Go virtual. Consider the use of technology in your event to reduce air miles. For example your overseas participants can come together virtually, through video conferencing, telephone conferencing or Skype. Our venues are equipped with the high-speed Wi-Fi and state-of-the-art equipment you need to make it happen. We’ll even provide technical support to get you up and running.
So there you have it, a few ways you can make small changes that will add up to a positive impact on our planet. Spread the word and why not pledge to make 2019 the year your events get a lot more environmentally friendly? We’d love to help you do things differently. Call our Sales Team on 0808 168 1168 or complete an enquiry form here to find out more.
Where to look for more information about reducing your carbon footprint
Read these tips from Greenpeace about reducing your plastic consumption
Learn more about sustainable agriculture and why it matters
Check out seven ways to save energy in the workplace