The Create Centre just won the Goldstar Award in the Green Tourism Awards Conference and Events category, so it must be doing something right! To help you learn from the Create Centre’s good example we’ve pulled out 5 key areas. Some of these sustainability initiatives you can deploy in your conference or event venue right now, even with a limited budget.
This is the key to starting any sustainability journey- and something you can start doing today. Knowing what your output means you can understand what you’re doing well and where you need to cut back.
- The Create Centre Coordinator uses SystemsLink, an online energy management portal providing half hourly data, to monitor and identify changes in consumption of electricity, gas and water.
- In October 2013 they changed waste contractor and are now able to monitor waste collections on-line.
2. Get serious about waste
- The Create Centre has achieved a 73.2% recycling rate since the start of the new waste contract.
- From June 2014 they have zero waste to landfill as residual waste goes to a combined heat and power station to be burned into energy.
- Waste cooking oil is taken for recycling to biodiesel.
- Recycling of writing implements has been introduced through TerraCycle with funds raised going to Avon Wildlife Trust.
3. Save and reuse water wherever possible
- Water-saving urinal tablets.
- Rain water harvesting system.
4. Engage employees and visitors
To bring their tenants, facility users and visitors with them on their sustainability journey they have a number of employee and visitor engagement initiatives including:
- Tenant information packs which include sustainable transport and recycling information, energy saving ideas and our environmental policy.
- Monthly tenants lunch to promote networking, information & ideas sharing.
- A pool of bikes and cars for sharing.
- Giving away over one hundred energy monitors to groups & individuals to encourage others to reduce their energy consumption.
- The Create Centre also delivers many free public green events.
5. Don’t forget the building
These infrastructure initiatives require more investment and planning but over a longer time period there are significant cost-savings to be enjoyed.
- Solar thermal panels provide hot water for the café with a public real time display.
- Lighting is energy efficient, with sensors where appropriate.
- A recent programme of insulation, including window seals and all heating and hot water pipes, saves an estimated 15 tonnes of CO2 per annum.
- Their sustainable educational offer includes free public exhibitions, a school tours programme and the Ecohome: a purpose-built demonstration home designed to inform and inspire visitors about greener living and building practices.
Applying these ideas to your own venue
But what to prioritise first I hear you cry? If you’ve found this article useful but feel you could do with a bit more guidance on how to get cracking yourself, come along on the 25th November 5-7pm for the Sustainable Event Workshop as we outline how to identify your goals and define your priorities. Register here.
What have you already done to make your venue more sustainable? Let us know in the comments below or get involved over on Twitter or Facebook. We’d love to hear from you!