A "green" meeting is one that is organized and implemented in such a way as to minimize negative impacts on the environment and promote a positive social legacy for the host community. Meetings and events are not stand alone activities. The average meeting or conference influences a number of other independent yet interactive industry sectors which, in turn, may produce a direct economic, social and environmental impact at their point of intersection. Meetings thus become stepping stones for sustainability in communities, creating local market demand for reductions in the use of toxic materials, the production of waste and greenhouse gas emissions, and the use of water and energy.
Anyone who has ever organized a conference or meeting knows the monetary and environmental costs involved in such an undertaking. In an effort to address these concerns, and to incorporate Green Purchasing into more public settings, EPA's EPP Program supports the Green Meetings Industry Council (GMIC) and its various best practice tips for managing and executing more sustainable meetings and events..
Starting with a 6 step sustainability framework highlighting a management system for 'green' meetings which balancing environmental, economic and social impacts of business needs, the website links to 10 Easy Tips for Making your Event More Sustainable (PDF) (1 pg, K, About PDF) . Additionally on the GMIC website you can find other educational resources, case studies, best practice guides, webinars, and the opportunity to become part of the GMIC community.
Also included are success stories, the opportunity to receive an e-newsletter and a calculator for gauging how "green" your meeting is through an interactive quiz that informs users how their choices effect the "greenness" of their meeting.
Finally, the online tool offers users a broad list of other links and resources. The goal of this tool is to allow users access to a comprehensive resource that should save time, money and the environment.
Additionally onthe GMIC web site you can find other educational resources, case studies, best practice guides, webinars, and the opportunity to become part of the GMIC community.