Lifting the load off sustainability-fatigued event planners

Sponsors, event owners and attendees are all expecting the greenest of green meetings, festivals, exhibitions and sporting events. Where to start and how to prioritise issues can be overwhelming for those charged with the sustainability management of an event.

Events should take time to get their house in order and create a system that will help them to identify and manage event sustainability issues and opportunities and move ‘beyond green’ to harness the powerful opportunity, and responsibility for events to contribute to sustainable development.

From principles to practice, the SEMS Tool gently takes the event planner’s hand to lead them down the path to event sustainability excellence. The SEMS Tool enables event planners to comply the standard and facilitates external scrutiny of compliance. It includes a performance scoring mechanism for both the organisation/office and event, and has built-in calculators for measuring event impacts of energy, transport, waste, water and GHGs.

The SEMS Tool was developed in response to a need in our industry, and gently guides event planners through all aspects of event sustainability best practice. An online tool, accessed through an annual license, SEMS takes users through a series of questions, from organisational principles, to office operations, destination, venue choice and event logistics.

By being asked questions across various categories, event planners are able to uncover event sustainability issues relevant to them. Every question comes with guidance, so it’s simultaneously a professional development training exercise.

A handy feature of the SEMS Tool is that questions can be ‘assigned’ to other staff members, suppliers, venue etc. This means answers, evidence and results can be gathered by the team, rather than relying on one person to do all the hard work.

Evidence (photos, documents, text, links) can be uploaded in response to each question, which both builds the management system as well as enables external scrutiny. It includes measurement calculators for energy, waste, water and transport and includes greenhouse gas emissions factors for every country, fuels and vehicle types. Also included is a transport worksheet to analyse travel modes and greenhouse gas impacts.

The SEMS Tool also covers all requirements of the new international standard ISO 20121: Event Sustainability Management Systems and provides templates for necessary procedure and process documentation. More than paperwork though, the SEMS Tool is the backbone of the management system the standard is asking you to implement.

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FREE: Downloadable Guides

Access the free guides which help event professionals to understand how to use the SEMS Tool to meet event sustainability goals, and to get ready to conform to standards and certifications.

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January 31, 2014

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