Conference Sustainability

Each year, SPLC strives to produce a conference using innovative practices that lessen our impact and reflect our social, environmental and economic values. To this end, SPLC has developed a comprehensive set of Event Venue Requirements & Preferences, Food & Beverage Requirements & Preferences for use in producing SPLC events. Through these and other measures, SPLC models the practices discussed in our conference sessions, to reduce the impact of this event, and illustrate ways other events can similarly reduce their impacts.

Additionally, 3 years ago MeetGreen® was hired to manage conference logistics and provide leadership and expertise in sustainability as it relates to meeting management. MeetGreen® is independently certified compliant with the ISO 20121: Event Sustainability Management System Standard. All aspects of their work for SPLC comply with ISO 20121 approaches.

Following are some of the resourceful measures we are implementing at this year’s Conference.

Destination Selection

Destination

 

 

Environmental aspects of the destination (Minneapolis, MN) were considered when selecting the host city. Examples include venues and suppliers with environmental practices, availability of waste reduction and recycling, local transit, and energy and water conservation programs adopted by the host city, venues and suppliers.

Meeting Facility Selection

Meeting Facility

 

    A clause is included in the facility contract requiring the meeting venue to comply with the agreed upon sustainability practices.

  • The hotel brand has a written sustainability policy.
  • The conference venue was chosen so that no ground transportation is required for attendees to get to the sessions.
  • The conference venue is easily accessible to airport, off site conference activities, and dining options via public transportation.
  • The hotel encourages sustainable choices for employees such as offering bike racks.
  • The hotel has a waste diversion program in place and agrees to report diversion rates for the conference.
  • The hotel has energy efficiency strategies in place for lighting and HVAC system.
  • The hotel has water efficiency strategies in place such as low-flow irrigation and landscape plants native to the area.

Marketing

Marketing

 

  • SPLC uses paper that is made with 100 percent recycled fiber and 50 percent post-consumer waste, processed chlorine free, for printed Conference materials.
  • SPLC uses low-VOC vegetable-based inks for printed Conference materials.
  • All pre conference communications are conducted electronically.
  • Conference signage is reused year over year whenever possible.
  • Program books are provided in digital format via the conference app.
  • Sponsor procurement is completed using 100% electronic communications (no sponsorship brochure mailed).
  • Pre conference attendee logistics packet encourages sustainable choices attendees can make when preparing to travel to the conference such as bringing a refillable water bottle/ travel mug and packing less clothing articles to minimize carbon load on jet travel.

Transportation

 

 

  • Offset of 100 percent of the carbon emissions generated by travel and facility usage during the Conference.
  • Attendees are encouraged to choose ground transportation options that minimize their carbon footprint and given options in order of most sustainable to least sustainable.
  • When transportation is needed, vendors are surveyed to assess sustainable practices.

Guest Accommodation 

Guest Accommodations

 

 

  • Hotel staff is instructed to turn down the heat/air-conditioning, shut drapes, and turn off the lights when rooms are vacant.
  • A towel and sheet reuse program is in place for all sleeping rooms.
  • No in-room bottled water is offered as an “amenity”.

Food & Beverage

 

Food & Beverage

 

  • Recycle and/or a compost program for throw-away food waste.
  • Use china / glassware on all banquet / catering functions.
  • Cloth napkins are used in all banquet functions.
  • No polystyrene products are used for banquet/ catering functions.
  • No bottles water is provided. Water stations are bulk dispensing only.
  • Condiments served in bulk containers, except artificial sweeteners, in banquet functions.
  • Eliminate the use of disposable service-ware.
  • Menus will be chosen with local, organic and sustainable products when possible, and vegetarian meals will be served.
  • Any seafood ingredients comply with Monterrey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch and/or Marine Stewards Certified.
  • Food on buffets and in menus will be labeled for those with food allergies.
  • The supplier shall report the % of total foods that are organic or local (within 250 miles).

· Only 100% certified Fair Trade coffee and tea will be served.

Waste Management

Waste Management

 

  • Recycling bins for glass, plastic, metal and paper available on all meeting floors.
  • Recycling bins for glass, plastic, metal and paper available on all lodging floors.
  • The facility has a surplus/ donation program that repurposes materials.
  • The facility has compost collection receptacles and procedures that divert recoverable materials from the landfill.
  • Leftover and unused exhibitor amenities (such as tote bags, product samples, etc.) are donated to a nonprofit organization.

To avoid paper waste, exhibitors are requested to print handouts on 100 percent post-consumer paper with vegetable-based ink and bring a minimum amount to distribute.

Meeting Management 

Meeting Management

 

  • All communications with speakers, sponsors and hotel are electronic.
  • Conference registration is entirely online and confirmations are electronic.
  • Conference office equipment is all EnergyStar rated.
  • All prospective vendors are requested to complete a sustainability survey and assessed for sustainability initiatives.