GMIC February Webinar News Capsule
Friday, February 17, 2012
Posted by: Tamara Kennedy-Hill
GMIC News Capsule Summary from February 14, 2012 Webinar on Standards
New green meeting standards mark
arrival of three new sets of sustainable meeting standards proves the momentum
and growth of the green meetings industry. In a Green Meeting Industry Council
(GMIC) webinar on February 14, Mariela McIlwraith, president of Meeting Change,
moderated a panel discussion with three experts who described three emerging
sets of green meeting standards.
The new standards,
which focus on the topics of product, process, and reporting, cement green
meeting legitimacy, said Lawrence Leonard, Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX)
director of the Convention Industry Council, who noted that standards move sustainable meeting
practices away from "things that are nice to do” "to things that are
quantifiable and supportable by found science.”
APEX teamed up with the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) to
produce the APEX/ASTM Green Meeting and Events Standards, which address nine
key environmental footprints of meetings and events.
APEX/ASTM standards are prescriptive and provide meeting planners with key performance
indicators (KPIs) to guide green meetings. The standards will be available
online through ASTM in the next few weeks.
results-oriented and really focused on KPIs and targets, and not how you
accomplish things,” Leonard said.
of planning green meetings is best explored through the International
Organization for Standardization (ISO) 20121. This framework for assessing and
managing environmental, social, and economic impacts of a meeting will be
published in June 2012, said Ginny Stratton, vice-chair of the Canadian Mirror
Committee for the ISO 20121.
Henderson, Chief Sustainability Strategist at Meeting Change,
shared the recently released Global Reporting Initiative Event Organizer Sector
Supplement (GRI EOSS), which sets the standard for reporting sustainable
meeting progress. The custom tool for the meetings industry is now available for
free download from the GRI website.
new green meetings standards can be used effectively on their own, they also
work well together. "Think of ISO as your iPhone, think of APEX as the apps you
put on your iPhone, and think of GRI as your wireless signal,” Henderson said,
referring to a metaphor inspired by incoming GMIC president Michael Luehrs.
on logistics and performance indicators, while ISO breaks down how the work
gets done. Finally, "the GRI is how you tell your story,” Henderson said. "It’s
your Valentine’s Day card.”
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