Greenview has just released its fourth annual Green Venue Report. I highly recommend reading through this very comprehensive 82-page document. You need not have meeting space to benefit from it. The 2017 Green Venue Report: The State of Convention and Exhibition Center Sustainability compiles data from 66 convention and exhibition centers across 16 countries and four continents (a 50 percent increase from 2016). The report is packed with examples of best practices, three-year trend graphics, and comparisons of green performance over a wide range of areas, including: energy efficiency, waste management, water usage, food and beverage services, cleaning practices, staff involvement, communications, and certifications.
The survey for the report consisted of 131 survey questions and was conducted in the spring of 2017, through the Greenview Portal, a web-based tool to consolidate, track, measure, and obtain actionable guidance on sustainability. All figures are based off 2016 operational data and information. It is clear there are a lot of very dedicated green team leaders working at convention and exhibition centers. Completing such an extensive survey takes a lot of time and effort.
The report is certainly proof of the power of investing in efficiency. It is also strong proof of how pervasive sustainability has become in the very competitive meetings industry.
Green Venue Report Highlights
Here are just a few nuggets of information from the report that got my attention:
- Thirty percent of venues have a green roof, a 27 percent increase compared to last year. The total number of venues with a green roof increased from 12 to 20 representing over 1.45 million square feet or 136,973 square meters. An additional two venues plan to install a green roof in the next 18 months.
- All of the participating venues in Europe were accessible from/to airport by train, light rail, bus, or subway/metro. In the United States: 46 percent.
- For the 2015 report, 77 percent of respondents reported tracking energy monthly. For this year’s report: 88 percent. For the 2015 report, 46 percent reported having energy-efficient boilers. For this year’s report: 68 percent.
- For the 2015 report, 6 percent reported capturing rainwater for storm water management or reuse. For the 2017 report: 24 percent.
- For the 2016 report, 49 percent reported having bottle refill stations located in the facility. For this year’s report: 59 percent.
- Ninety-eight percent of venues have an active and ongoing program in place to recycle at least general waste, cans, paper or plastic.
- For 2015, 67 percent indicated they had a publicly available, written sustainability policy in place. For this year’s report: 83 percent. Sixty-four percent of venues indicated they prepare an annual sustainability report specifically for the venue or as part of the city’s annual sustainability report.
- Almost all venues are proactively marketing their commitment and programs to planners and other stakeholders, with 92 percent of venues having a webpage or website section dedicated to sharing the venues’ sustainability practices.
- The total number of venues reported to having a dedicated Sustainability Coordinator or Sustainability Manager was 37 out of 66 venues, 56 percent of total. Of those venues with a dedicated sustainability position, 59 percent held professional designations such as LEED AP or LEED Green Associate. Eighty-two percent of venues have a Green Team, with an average green team size of 16 staff members.
- Thirty-three percent responded that they coordinate with exhibitors for donations when asked by event organizers at no additional cost.
- This year, 94 percent of venues responded to holding some type of sustainability certification or participating government, state, municipality or country wide sustainability designation program that focus on environmental responsibility and community stewardship.
Click here to access the entire report.