Getting Greener All the Time, Part 3

Is Our Footprint Getting Smaller?

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MSW_Event_Report%20%281%29.JPGFor our final look at the environmental impact of Oracle OpenWorld 2008, we’ll focus on the calculations of the MeetGreen Calculator to see how our choices added up this year. Meeting Strategies Worldwide put together a report called Greening Oracle OpenWorld 2008 using the calculator to track the show’s environmental practices, benchmark our progress, and point out areas where we can do more in the years to come.

Although we didn’t have any formal policies in place for the 2007 show, we tried to implement practices that resulted in environmental benefits. For the 2008 show, we formalized and measured our planning and execution with the help of Meeting Strategies Worldwide. Today, we’ll share their comparisons between our 2007 and 2008 choices.

Our greatest area of progress was around transportation. By consolidating routes, changing the frequency of trips to downtown hotels, and developing a second “walking route,” we eliminated the need for 11 coaches each day. We also required vendors to make changes in their shipping methods so that tighter schedules and consolidated loads reduced the impact of move-in and move-out operations.

Another huge improvement was the reduction of paper used for the conference. The 2008 Conference Guide page count was reduced by 60% compared to 2007, and our on-demand printing needs dropped by 37.5%. In addition, the move to online collateral and online exhibitor kits cut those printing requirements in half. Our on-site staff printing needs had the most dramatic improvement, shrinking from 80 cases of paper in 2006, to 40 cases in 2007, to a mere 25 cases in 2008. That’s a 75% reduction in just two years!

Finally, our strategies for providing food and beverages allowed us to divert 31% of the waste at the Moscone Center from area landfills. Reduced packaging, bulk condiments, and biodegradable utensils netted a reduction of 43,640 pounds of waste. Hartmann Studios provided recycling and composting stations. By making sure that our trash was sorted into the correct collection bins, we ensured that the smart choices we made in providing sustainable food and beverages were maintained in their disposal.

If you want to get a more detailed look at what was measured, how the metrics were developed, and where Oracle OpenWorld 2008 ranks in relation to the sustainability of other conferences, download the report here.

We know there’s more to do in 2009. We’ll expand our development of reusable signage. We’ll capture and benchmark our ongoing efforts. We’ll encourage you to be green while at the show and beyond. And we’ll continue to find the most environmentally friendly way to bring you our latest products, services, and innovations. Let us know what standards you think we should meet, and tell us how you can help us make Oracle OpenWorld even greener in 2009.

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