Sustainable Event Tip #21 – Offset Your Emissions for a Carbon Neutral Event

In a previous post, I spoke about how different areas of an event contribute to its overall carbon footprint. Venue space, food and beverage, marketing materials, transportation; they all produce their own respective greenhouse house gas (GHG) emissions.

Now while efforts should be made to reduce GHG emissions in each of those areas to the greatest extent possible, it’s impossible to eliminate them entirely. Food and beverage production will always have an impact (cows are gassy animals), and so too will the travel of attendees to and from an event (even public transit has an impact). In order to host a carbon neutral event, therefore, you must purchase carbon offset credits to offset those GHG emissions.

Calculating your event’s carbon footprint

The only caveat that I would like to include with this sustainable event tip is about how you choose to calculate your event’s carbon footprint. There are many strategies for doing this and many companies that will help you do so, however I feel strongly that many of these approaches fall short of the mark. For the most part, they account for an event’s carbon footprint in terms of venue, accommodations, and maybe materials usage. In the rare case they may account for food and beverage too.

Altogether, they tend to overlook GHG emissions related to transportation, which is generally the most impactful area of an event. An event’s carbon footprint should include all of those areas, otherwise it’s difficult to claim you’re hosting a carbon neutral event if only a small part of it is being accounted for.

If you’d like Green Meeting Ninjas to help calculate your event’s carbon footprint and find you the best carbon offsets, we invite you to get in touch.

A Word from Green Meeting Ninjas


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