It’s safe to say the events industry isn’t the greenest of industries. Events create a lot of waste and leave a significant carbon footprint. In fact, a recent ‘Meet Green’ survey found the average conference attendee produces 1.89kg of waste per day, 1.16kg of which ends up in landfill.
While many events have a long way to go to be greener, some are doing their bit to reduce their carbon footprint. We recently worked with MWC Barcelona, the largest mobile event in the world attracting 109,000 visitors. The event is recognised by the Guinness Book Of World Records, no less, as ‘The World’s Largest Carbon Neutral Trade Show’ and in 2019 its organiser GSMA decided to scrap the show’s printed event guide in place of an event app which could be accessed, viewed and downloaded via Giant iTabs strategically placed around the event venue. The project resulted in over a quarter of a million touches recorded on the giant smartphones across the four-day show. The smartphones helped to increase visibility of, and access to, key event information and to drive attendees to where they wanted to go, increasing event app adoption and eliminating the need for a printed event guide.
MWC Barcelona is just one example of an event making positive steps for the environment. As an event technology company, we too are increasingly aware of our carbon footprint. Flying our kit to events across the world has a big impact on the environment. To fly one member of staff along with our kit to Singapore from London has an estimated carbon footprint of 1.8 tonnes.
In the last couple of years, we have taken steps to decrease our carbon footprint by working with partners across the world. These like-minded AV technology companies deliver our Giant iTabs to customers at a local level in their own territories, saving the need to fly our team and kit back and forth to each event. The Giant iTab network currently covers four continents and 12 countries and by creating this network we are benefiting the environment as well as the customer. Working with a ‘local’ AV Rental company, operating in the same time zone, using the same language and currency with intimate knowledge of the culture and geographical landscape, has inevitably got its benefits.
The environmental impact of events isn’t going to go away but by working with suppliers with global partners and replacing printed materials with digital technology, there are plenty of ways we can all do our bit to be more sustainable.