Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 70.12
Liaison Ciannat Howett
Submission Date July 25, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Emory University
IN-5: Green Event Certification

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.50 / 0.50 Kelly Weisinger
Assistant Director
OSI
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution’s green event certification program address the following?:
Yes or No
Sustainable transportation options, teleconferencing options, and/or carbon offsets Yes
Sustainable catering (e.g. sourcing local and third party certified food and beverages, providing vegetarian/vegan options, using reusable/compostable materials) Yes
Paper consumption (e.g. minimization and recycled/FSC certified content) Yes
Energy efficiency (e.g. equipment and lighting) Yes
Waste minimization and diversion Yes
Communications and/or signage about the sustainable practices Yes

A brief description of the institution’s green event certification program, including the specific components selected above:

Emory's Sustainable Events Certification is a program designed to encourage and empower event planners and organizers to create events that support Emory’s sustainability vision by reducing environmental and social impacts and, in many cases, reducing costs. The Sustainable Event Certification program outlines best practices, but event planners are encouraged to be creative and go beyond these guidelines when possible.There are two levels of Sustainable Event Certification an event may receive:

1) Zero Landfill Waste: Event eliminates all polystyrene (Styrofoam) from the waste stream, provides both recycling and composting bins throughout the event space, and no extra trash cans are ordered for the event. Any pre-existing trash cans are not available for use or are repurposed and clearly labeled as recycling or compost bins.

2) Gold: 75% of all applicable checklist items are achieved including all Zero Landfill Waste credits. Items in addition to Zero Landfill Waste that meet this credit requirements include:

- Encourage attendees to use alternative commute options for all events, and/or proactively arrange carpooling for internal events.
- Reduce commute miles by offering a virtual presence.
- Reduce commute miles by recommending local accommodations to overnight guests accessible by public transit, such as Emory’s LEED-silver certified Conference Center Hotel.
- Make vegetarian and vegan options available, if serving food.
- Provide Fair Trade coffee and tea, if refreshments are being served.
- Minimize give-away items.
- Minimize paper use buy utilizing electronic invitations, communication, and publicity to minimize paper.
- Serve tap water with reusable, recyclable, or compostable cups. No bottled water will be served at the event
- Encourage guests prior to the event to bring their own refillable bottles and/or mugs.
- Make sure all event staff, including caterers, are knowledgeable about how to recycle and compost and are instructed to separate recyclable and compostable materials into the appropriate containers.
- Use China or reusable plates, cups, bowls, serving containers, and cutlery. Use compostable, paper, or plastic items only if disposables are needed. No Styrofoam!
- Event planner will attempt to exclude give-away items from the event, or provide sustainable items if necessary.
- Event planner will utilize electronic invitations, communication, and publicity to minimize paper.
- Event planner will opt out of name tags, use reusable name tags, or collect and reuse plastic name tags after event.
- Event planner will opt for electronic flyers and a minimal number of printed flyers and other marketing materials. When physical materials are necessary, event planner will use banners, signs and posters made of reusable or recyclable materials.
- Use sustainable paper options for any necessary paper use: Event planner will ensure that 100% post-consumer recycled, FSC-certified, or tree-free designated products (in that order) are used for the event.
- Use natural light as much as possible instead of indoor lighting: Event planner will schedule the event in a room with windows during daylight hours or host the event outdoors, when feasible. Event planner will turn off overhead or other unnecessary lights when sufficient natural light is available.
- Event planner will communicate with whomever is running equipment to switch devices off when not in use.
- Incorporate local and/or sustainable food into the menu and specify on any signage (menu cards, buffet markers, etc.): Event planner will plan a menu that includes certified Fair Trade items, produce from local and/or sustainable sources, and/or certified organic products.
- Repurpose unopened or packaged leftover food or goods: Event planner will repurpose unopened or packaged food by donating to local charities, allowing attendees to take home leftovers, or using leftovers at other campus events.
- Provide Fair Trade coffee and tea, if refreshments are being served: Event planner will communicate with coffee/tea vendors about beverage options and select Fair Trade coffee/tea.
- Make vegetarian and vegan options available, if serving food: Event planner will work with food vendors to add vegetarian and vegan options, or eliminate meat options all together.
- Minimize food waste by requiring attendees to register for meals (rather than just showing up): Event planner will require an RSVP for attendees indicating the number of guests in their parties.
- Minimize material waste by serving condiments, sauces and spreads in bulk rather than individual packets:Event planner will request that vendors use bulk-size serving container options.
- Minimize waste by choosing reusable or recyclable event décor rather than disposable: Event planner will use décor such as potted plants, or decorating with fabric rather than disposable plastic.
- Choose flowers that are local, organic or certified sustainably and/or ethically grown: Event planner will search for local flower growers or utilize companies with certified sustainably grown flowers.
- Encourage attendees to use alternative commute options for all events, and/or proactively arrange carpooling for internal events: Event planner will provide alternative commute information along with the customary parking information to event attendees.
- Reduce commute miles by offering a virtual presence: Event planner will utilize virtual conferencing or a webinar for attendees who are not local or for out of town speakers if they are not already in the area.
- Reduce commute miles by recommending local accommodations to overnight guests accessible by public transit, such as Emory’s LEED-silver certified Conference Center Hotel: Event planner will provide attendees a list of area accommodations, as well as Cliff and MARTA routes.
- Announce sustainable event features to attendees during the event, including an explanation of how to recycle and compost: Event planner will work time into the event agenda to announce sustainable features and your participation in the sustainable events program.
- Share sustainable event features with other event planners and colleagues to encourage others to plan sustainable events: Event planner will talk to colleagues about strategies for achieving Sustainable Event status.
- Assign volunteers or representatives to recycling/composting stations to assist guests with proper disposal:Event planner will work with volunteers so that they are knowledgeable about how to recycle and compost.
- Create your own innovative action for the event and describe the action here. The action can focus on any facet of sustainability: Event planners often have the most innovative ideas about how to make events more sustainable. We want to hear about these and share them!


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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