Meeting Green, Part 1
By jack.flynn on Jul 15, 2008
It's Not Easy Being Green
Oracle is committed to protecting the environment, and we make sure that our efforts and awareness extend to Oracle OpenWorld, the world's largest event dedicated to helping you get the most from your information technology. During the 2007 conference, we did a lot to ensure that the event had as little environmental impact as possible, but in 2008, we want to do even better.
With that goal in mind, we commissioned Meeting Strategies Worldwide, an award-winning environmental firm that specializes in the meetings industry, to make a green assessment of our 2007 conference. We wanted to find out what we did right, where we could do better, and how to use Oracle OpenWorld as a springboard to implement environmentally friendly practices companywide. Let's begin with what we did right.
During Oracle OpenWorld 2007, we donated a ton (literally 2,000 pounds) of food to local charity, and diverted almost 60 percent of all the conference waste from landfills by composting, recycling, and reusing. Eighty percent of our exhibitors used online kits instead of printed material to provide brochures, fact sheets, and white papers to customers. Printed materials for the conference were produced with 10 percent post-consumer recycled paper and soy-based ink. And we transported VIPs to and from the show in hybrid or biodiesel vehicles.
We didn't get everything right, however. Meeting Strategies made some suggestions about how we could be doing more. For instance, the evaluation pointed out that we could include green clauses in contracts we sign with local vendors, ensuring that their best practices are contractually obligated. Additionally, we might also want to purchase some carbon offsets for all the unavoidable emissions the convention creates.
These are just a few of the evaluation findings. Check back soon for more green posts, including important insights from guest blogger Nancy J. Wilson, CMP of Meeting Strategies Worldwide.
There are many different takes on what makes a conference truly green—see this CNET article for example. If you have observations or suggestions about how to make Oracle OpenWorld greener, please leave them in the comments section below. We'd love to hear what you think.