The local meetings industry is a pioneer in ecological sustainability, inclusion, and accessibility. Sustainability is considered part of the industry’s DNA. But, there are still choices organisers can make to improve sustainability. As all infrastructure is in place, we can focus on adding value to make meetings stand out and impress – from a sustainability standpoint.
The guide to sustainable Gothenburg 2023 can inspire you even further to make conscious choices about accommodation, restaurants, activities and shopping.
Steps to Sustainability
- Include sustainability in the early planning stages.
- Plan your meeting to be inclusive for all.
- Involve employees and other stakeholders to identify key areas and set goals for the meeting.
- Collaborate with the destination and suppliers.
- Consider an eco-certification for meetings and events by the Swedish Environmental Base.
- Analyse purchasing practices and place demands on suppliers.
- Inspire others by sharing your ambitions and what you are doing.
- Measure, report and evaluate.
- Share your mishaps and celebrate your successes – large and small.
Travel and Transport
- Calculate and offset your greenhouse emissions. Go to the calculator.
- Travel with emission-free transportation, use and promote public transport at the destination.
- Walk or cycle. Distances in Gothenburg are short, meaning easy walking distances. And there are plenty of bikes and scooters to rent.
- Encourage participants to carbon offset their travel.
- Choose an environmentally certified facility.
- Ask the provider how they can help you meet your goals – shared transport, food, waste etc.
Purchasing and waste
- Plan purchases based on reducing – reusing – recycling.
- Have a plan for leftover material.
- Make sure it is easy to sort waste.
- Choose local products that meet eco and ethical labelling standards.
- Choose local suppliers.
- Focus on experiences as giveaways.
Food and beverage
- Serve more vegetarian options.
- Choose seasonal and locally produced products.
- Choose ecologically and ethically labelled produce.
- Tap water is healthy, safe and delicious. Refill your bottles at drinking fountains around the city.
- Serve tap water instead of bottled water and obtain the Kranmärkt event label. No transports nor waste accumulated.
- Communicate what you are serving and the origin of food and drink. Remember that information about allergies and ingredients simplify food choices for many people.
- Serve ethically labelled coffee and tea or at least two other ethically labelled products, e.g. chocolate, sugar, bananas, nuts and wine, to certify the meeting according to Fairtrade City.
- Choose eco-labelled hotels. 92 % av all the hotel rooms in Gothenburg are eco-certified.
- Make it possible for people with disabilities of varying kinds to participate in your meeting.
- Communicate accessibility already in the invitation.
- Promote gender equality actively in programmes and aim for panels with mixed-gender panels.
Wheelmap is an interactive map of accessible places in Gothenburg to help people in wheelchairs.
The Accessibility Database gathers accessibility information on registered establishments.
Contribute to the local community
- Explore legacy-creating opportunities and activities to contribute to your long-term goals and impact the local community.
- Encourage participants to get involved in activities promoting the local community or environmental organisations.
- Share knowledge and create outreach activities with local organisations such as science centres and festivals.
- Ask the meeting facility to donate surplus food and materials to local non-profit organisations.
Communication and marketing
- Inform participants about sustainability ambitions and sustainable actions.
- Prioritise digital communication and marketing.
- Involve and challenge participants to contribute to a sustainable meeting.
- Hire local hosts.
- Ensure that hosts have good working conditions and are insured.
- Be sure to have a wide diversity among hosts.