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GREEN Conferences, Meetings and Events

Conferences, meetings and events often can generate large amounts of waste. For an environmentally-responsible group, this can be embarrassing, and can literally have a negative impact and leave an otherwise exciting event with a sour note. Groups putting on an event will appreciate a facility's commitment to the environment and its willingness to provide extraordinary customer service.Delaware Green Lodging is a new DNREC Pollution Prevention (P2) program

Advertising the following services and conditions of the event could prove to be a significant marketing edge for your facility!  Best of all, many of these steps and suggestions are easy and will actually save you and the conference- or event-hosting facility money.

Before the event
Have your event at a Delaware Green Lodging facility or other facility that is GREEN and willing to accommodate your requests.

  • Conference information should be provided electronically.
  • All printed materials should be on recycled-content paper that contains at least 30% post consumer material and two-sided.
  • Use soy-based inks and energy-efficient equipment when printing.
  • All paper products (writing paper, toilet paper and tissues) should be non-bleached and at least 30% post consumer content.
  • Provide accurate attendance numbers to service providers to reduce food and other wastes.
  • Electronic registration and check-out provided by the hotel saves paper & energy.
  • Provide participant information at public transportation; or provide participants with "public transportation tokens" as part of their registration package.
  • Incorporate requirement for environmentally preferable products into contracts with suppliers of conference materials.
  • "Green" the exhibitors and vendors.  Encourage vendors to stay with the green theme and to minimize wasteful giveaways wherever possible.
  • Hotel information can be provided to guests electronically or at least using double-sided copying.
  • Green Energy: Consider purchasing "green tags" or "renewable energy credits" to offset the additional costs of using energy from renewable sources to power your conference. For more information, go to

The Facility

  • Optional towel and linen service should be offered by hotel and staff should be properly instructed.
  • Bulk dispensers for toiletries.  Encourage the use of refillable dispensers or if a facility provides toiletries in small quantities, encourage the facility to replace the containers only when they are empty or for a new guest.
  • Energy Efficiency.  Encourage the use of energy efficient lighting & sensors.  The use of compact fluorescents in rooms and in recessed lighting is a good way to reduce energy costs.  Also, facilities should be recycling all fluorescent lamps.
  • Electronically controlled heating & air conditioning  saves energy and money.
  • Publicly available copiers should have double-sided copying option.
  • Recycling should be available in all meeting and guest rooms.  Information should be provided to guests to explain what is collected.
  • Water Conservation.  Low-flow toilets and water fixtures save water and money.  Other water-saving opportunities include food service, laundry and landscaping changes.
  • Restrooms are equipped with air dryers to reduce the use of paper towels.

During the event

  • Clean-up crews should be trained to recycle all recyclable materials.
  • All recycling areas should be well marked and easily accessible.
  • Reusable dishes, silverwares, napkins, tablecloths and serving containers should be used.
  • No Styrofoam.   If not able to use reusable products, use paper or biodegradable materials for disposable cups and take-out containers.
  • Avoid use of boxed lunches to reduce generation of waste.
  • Provide water and other beverages in pitchers or bulk dispensers.

After the event

  • Provide conference proceedings electronically via e-mail, internet, flash drives or CD-ROM.
  • Assess program an identify potential improvements and suggestions.

       For additional ideas, visit the Environmental Protection Agency's Green Meetings page. For more information on the Delaware Green Lodging Program, please contact Bill Miller, program manager, DNREC Pollution Prevention Program, 302-739-9403, ext. 8 or via e-mail:


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