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Sustainable event organisation: Just do it!

© Andrew Knechel

At the ITB Berlin NOW Convention the event industry emphasised its responsibility towards future generations

”The event industry faces an existential threat and needs support. At the same time coronavirus and the climate crisis clearly show that things cannot go on as they are. Two things are now needed to ensure the long term survival of the events industry: the continued existence of companies and free-lancers – as demanded by the federation Bündnis #AlarmstufeRot and submitted to the German government – and support to enable the sector to transition to sustainability and climate neutrality by 2030 at the latest." These are the the first sentences of an appeal for which support was actively sought by Bernd Fritzges and Doreen Biskup from the Association of Event Organisers (VDVO) and by Stefan Lohmann, founder of Sustainable Event Solutions, and Dr. Katharina Reuter, general manager of Unternehmensgrün, on Friday at the ITB Berlin NOW Convention.

“In order to be able to face the future we must act sustainably, that is very obvious", said Stefan Lohmann, pointing out that many of the event industry’s customers, such as those companies that present an environmental record or carbon footprint, or municipalities and public sector clients, will require an event organisation that is also sustainable. “If we are to decarbonise, we will need lighthouses and pilots", added Dr. Katharina Reuter. She advised companies to actively address this issue. “It is not such a major task, and it can be done. Select an objective and begin taking the first steps. Just do it!", was Reuter’s  advice.

According to Doreen Biskup of VDVO, events are the sixth largest business sector in Germany and are closely integrated into other sectors. “If we do not take the initiative, others may not either. We bear a massive responsibility, and in the final analysis it will determine whether the world can be safeguarded for future generations", as Biskup explained.

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