Green Guidelines: Meetings

Simply put, a green meeting is one that includes environmental initiatives that can minimize the meeting’s negative impact on our environment, including reducing energy and water consumption, reducing food and beverage waste and reducing waste from communications with partners and attendees.

In the past, hotel companies developed their own green meeting options. Typically, a meeting planner would put together a meeting request and a hotel’s response included green meeting options. In recent years, however, the industry has seen a reversal in roles, as more meeting planners are requesting green meetings with specific criteria and seeking a hotel’s compliance.  

Two standards are at the forefront of green meeting planning:

  • The Standard for Sustainable Event “management systems” (ISO 20121)

  • The APEX/ASTM standard, developed by the Convention Industry Council’s Accepted Practices Exchange and built off the ISO 14001 for environmental management systems

These standards guide event planners with regard to food-and-beverage menus, ground transportation services, audio-visual setup, meeting locations, destinations and accommodations.  

Resources for Green Meetings  

Green Key Meeting's certification program.