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Let there be green

Things are changing in the event industry, and greenmeetings and events, a convention for sustainable productions, aims to get that message across. Marcus Stadler, head of our CSR team, was on hand to give a speech. He certainly came with impeccable credentials: Our crews go about their daily business with satis&fy’s mantra–reduce, reuse, recycle–fixed firmly in mind. And our Show Green initiative is spearheading the drive towards more sustainable practices in this business. 

“There’s a lot that can be done,” Marcus told an engrossed and well-informed crowd, “even a few changes can make a difference.” He also recounted some success stories to illustrate the benefits of thinking things through from cradle to cradle, including LED spots that only consume power when they’re needed, recyclable carpets made of corn starch, and frequently reused FSC-certified woods, fabrics and eco-friendly prints. 

But Marcus’ speech wasn’t all hearts and flowers; the greenmeetings and events get-together is also a good place to talk turkey. After all, there’s still a long way to go and much to be done. The effort to set up closed recycling chains in Germany, say for carpets used at trade shows, has stalled. The low price of oil makes recycled materials a far less attractive alternative. Proper certification for recycled plastics is still a long way off. Electricity is all too often included in a location’s flat rental fee, so there’s no incentive to conserve energy. And most important, demand has to grow. This is the key to closing the gap and making prices more competitive. Customers need to know what can be done and what’s in it for them, and conventions such as greenmeetings and events provide the perfect opportunity to tell the story. It’s an excellent forum for Marcus to speak about the importance of sustainability without getting preachy. 

Two other presentations followed Marcus’, upon which a spirited discussion ensued. The attendees’ outlook is optimistic, with a lot of the talk being about workable solutions. A proposal was put forward to develop an industry-wide guide that would help private promoters and public organizers ask the right questions and opt for a green alternative. Demand will only grow if everyone knows what’s feasible. satis&fy will continue working hard to get the message across. And if sustainability was made mandatory in public tenders, this initiative would pick up real momentum. Alliances are imperative. If the industry pulls together as a team, reusing custom builds and demanding more eco-efficient products from manufacturers, everyone will win–especially Mother Nature.

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