How to Green Your Event

How to Green Your Event

What does it mean to be “Green”?

Going green means that your event will be environmentally friendly and sustainable. The overall goal is to reduce our negative impact on the environment as much as possible, . Whether large or small, your Change Food event should be a conscientious one, where attendees and viewing party members work with the organizers to achieve a green event. This means taking steps to source food/resources locally, reduce waste, be energy efficient and generally create as sustainable an event as possible.

What can you do to Green Your Event?

Follow these environmentally friendly suggestions in order to green your event. You should also share these tips with your Viewing Party organizers. 

Energy consumption

It isnʼt possible to control the energy your venue uses, but when selecting a venue, ask if the building does anything to conserve energy or reduce power consumption. Look for a LEED-certified building.

In addition:

  • Optimize venue offices, walkways, etc., so they use as little electricity as possible.
  • Turn off lights and air conditioning when rooms are not in use.

Set computers, printers and other electronic devices to “sleep” after a few minutes.

Event Design

The overall design of your event, particularly materials, should be sustainable.

  • Design reusable signage.
  • Share signage among local TEDx groups.
  • For production lighting, replace incandescent bulbs with CFLs or LED light bulbs.
  • Produce signage and programs from recycled materials.
  • Purchase furniture made from recycled products, and recycle or donate once no longer needed. Try Freecycle.
  • Have a furniture store loan you furniture and have them be one of your sponsors.
  • Order lanyards made from recyclable or biodegradable products. Try Waldo Tags.
  • Reuse lanyards and badge holders fro next yearʼs event
  • Have recycle boxes at all exits for name badges and lanyards.
  • Avoid cut flowers. Give away or donate plants or other decorations at the end of the event.

Food Service

Server with AppetizersAs this is an event about improving the food system, your food at the event should be a critical concern when going green. You should try to do whatever you can to provide food that is as local and sustainable as possible.

  • Choose beverages and snacks whose packaging is biodegradable, or, better yet, minimize all packaging.
  • Serve finger foods that donʼt require packaging or utensils (e.g., cheese, crackers, crudités)
  • Make use of reusable containers for coffee or water.
  • If disposables must be used, purchase compostable plates, cups and silverware.
  • Provide local sustainable and/or organic food. In the U.S., visit EatWellGuide.org to find good options for your event.
  • Have dishes delivered in returnable, recyclable, or compostable containers.
  • Serve food on reusable dishes with reusable silverware and linens instead of paper napkins.
  • Serve organic and fair-trade coffees, teas and other beverages.
  • Use bulk dispensers for salt, pepper, ketchup, etc.
  • Offer vegan/vegetarian options and sustainable seafood items. A vegan meal has a lower carbon footprint.
  • Avoid non-edible garnishes on food.
  • Donate any leftover food to a food bank, soup kitchen or homeless shelter.
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