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Pollution Prevention (P2)

Green Meetings

Whether you are a meeting host, planner or service supplier, you can use this site to find the tips, tools and resources to make environmentally responsible choices for meetings and events.

On this page:

Basic Information

A "green" meeting is one that is organized and implemented in such a way as to minimize negative impacts on the environment and promote a positive social impact for the host community. Meetings and events are not stand-alone activities. The average meeting or conference influences a number of other independent yet interactive industry sectors which, in turn, may produce a direct economic, social and environmental impact at their point of intersection. Meetings thus become stepping stones for sustainability in communities, creating local market demand for products and/or services that result in the reduction of  toxic materials, waste generation, greenhouse gas emissions, and water and energy consumption.

Environmental Attributes to Consider

  • Electronic distribution of materials and handouts
  • Online registration
  • Minimize packing and shipping materials
  • Mass transit-accessible location
  • Reusable badges, signage and food serviceware
  • Buy local
  • Minimize distribution of prizes and giveaways
  • Partner with water and energy conservation programs
  • Minimize travel distance for attendees
  • Partner with recycling and waste minimization programs

​Federal Green Meeting Resources

Green Meetings and Conferences Policy - US EPA Region 9
This policy aims to reduce the environmental footprint of EPA Region 9 meetings and conferences and supports the Agency's and Region 9's goals of preventing pollution, minimizing use of resources, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Green Hotels - Resources, Ecolabels and Standards

Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines (CPG)
Here are the recycled-content recommendations for procurement of conference and meeting supplies.

GSA’s Green Procurement Compilation
The Green Procurement Compilation (GPC) is a comprehensive green purchasing resource designed for federal contracting personnel and program managers. It helps you identify applicable green purchasing requirements.

Non-Federal Green Meeting Resources

EPA has compiled this list of non-EPA references and sources that relate broadly and generally to the planning and implementation of "green" -- or more sustainable -- meetings, conferences and events both in the government and private sectors. This list is for informational purposes only, and inclusion on the list does not imply any EPA endorsement of these entities, their products or services. The following links exit EPA's website. Exit

ASTM/APEX Green Meeting Standard
These American National Standards (ANSI) are composed of nine individual sets of sector specifications addressing the scope of the meeting and event planning process. These include standards for the evaluation and selection of accommodations, meeting venues, destinations, food and beverage, exhibits, on-site office, transportation, audio visual, and communications.  Read more about ASTM/APEX Green Meeting Standard.

Events Industry Council
The Events Industry Council site has an extensive list of tools, tips and resources as well as testimonials, case studies, elearning and trainings and workshops.

Meeting Professionals International (MPI)
Meeting Professionals International provides resources and training focused on reducing the environmental impact of meetings through promoting recycling, reducing paper waste and creating environmentally conscious business partnerships.

United Nations Environment Programme - Green Meeting Guide 2009
The Green Meeting Guide is designed to assist organizers and hosts of small-to medium-sized meetings in including green considerations as early as possible in the preparation of the event. It describes the issues to consider in the planning phase and provides a very simple and concrete check list to pick and choose concrete actions to carry out.