Planning A Green Event - Next Steps
Once you have covered the Essential Actions, choose at least FIVE of the following actions to qualify as a Litter Free Green Event.
Promotion & Giveaway Initiatives
- Encourage participants to bring their own paper, pens, reusable mugs and/or water bottles.
- Use reusable bags for promotional material and giveaways that are environmentally friendly.
- Recognize those who “walk the talk” and reward them with certificates and/or gifts such as refillable mugs, reusable bags, water bottles, gift certificates to local restaurants, bus passes or packets of organic seeds.
Waste Reduction Initiatives
- Provide water in pitchers and washable glasses for speakers and on meeting tables. Use reusable cloth tablecloths and serviettes. These items may be rented.
- Download presentations and handouts onto CD’s or Zip Drives to save photocopying, or commit to e-mailing resources to participants after the event.
- Set up a collection of food scraps (fruit, vegetables, coffee grounds; NO dairy, meat, or fats) with each food vendor and in food prep areas. Five gallon food-grade buckets work well. Arrange with a local farmer or community garden to pick up the material and take it away for composting.
- Encourage food vendors to sell drinks to people who have brought their own refillable beverage containers (travel mugs, water bottles) and charge more for drinks sold in single-use containers. Single-use containers should be biodegradable (not styrofoam or plastic) or recyclable (e.g. pop cans and plastic 1 & 2 bottles).
- Set up a deposit system on reusable plates for outdoor events. Have patrons return their plates to receive their deposit back (i.e. $1-2). Arrange for dishwashing in an approved facility. Require all food vendors to take part.
- Encourage food vendors to use large containers for cream (a thermos works well), sugar, condiments, etc. instead of individual packets. Check with Thunder Bay Health Unit for requirements.
- Collect name tag holders at the end of your event so they can be re-used next time.
Litter Prevention Initiatives (Outdoor Events)
- Taking steps to prevent litter before it hits the ground is the most effective way of dealing with litter.
- Have volunteers wearing brightly-coloured shirts (i.e. a Green Team) mingle among the crowd with garbage and/or recycling bags to collect litter before it hits the ground.
- Have the announcers remind patrons to look for the volunteers and bins and to do their part to make the event litter free and green.
- Pick up any litter on the ground during the event. Studies have shown that people are less likely to litter in a clean area. Make sure bins are emptied regularly to avoid overflow.
- Post signs near food vendors and bins reminding people to “can” their trash.
Energy & Transportation Initiatives
- For day-time meetings in a room with windows, leave the lights off to save energy and reduce your event’s carbon footprint.
- Encourage participants to choose lodgings close to the site and to walk, bike, carpool and use public transportation and shuttle services.
- Organizers and participants can offset event CO2 emissions by sponsoring a tree(s) through the Thunder Bay Tree Stewardship Program.
- Use caterers who commit to using local and organic foods. Serve fair trade coffee.
- Support local businesses as much as possible when purchasing products and services for your event.
- Have “Green Displays” at the event to help educate attendees about what they can do to help the environment. This is also a great opportunity to highlight your green activities.
Back to Essential Actions
Back to Litter Free Green Event Page
This litter prevention program is funded by the City of Thunder Bay Clean, Green and Beautiful Committee and delivered by EcoSuperior Environmental Programs.