Members of the Association of Event Organisers (AEO), Association of Event Venues (AEV) and Event Supplier and Services Association (ESSA) have come together for the inaugural cross-association sustainability working group meeting.
The group evolved from one initially created by the AEV, which has been addressing sustainability issues for over five years, including contributions to event industry certifications BS8901 and ISO20121.
“We are delighted to be able to open up the established AEV sustainability group to contractors and advisors to gain a whole new perspective,” said Earls Court and Olympia Venues sustainability advisor and working group chair Emma Wellman.
“We are looking forward to watching the group work together and grow over the next few years.”
The working group wants to find ways for the industry to reduce the impact of activities surrounding events and exhibitions. Its focus includesboth practical and procedural steps that the industry can take together specifically to reduce landfill waste and energy use – the most costly sustainability issues.
“Over many years, stakeholder groups have created their own initiatives and our ambition is to facilitate the sharing of best practice to improve sustainability within member businesses and across the sector,” said AEV and ESSA director Chris Skeith (pictured).
Some venues are pursuing sustainability initiatives including the provision of electric car points, use of compostable cups and cutlery throughout catering outlets, the introduction of recycling bins provided byglobal corporations, and centralisation of waste management contracts.
“The day was positive and informative, and moving forward, the working group should be able to help the UK events and exhibition industry adjust to the new legal and moral requirements that will affect us all,” said Martin Cottrell, MD at A1 Event and Exhibition Cleaners and ESSA board member.
Excel London was the first private venue in the UK to receive both the environmental ISO14001 and BS8901 certifications last November.
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