How can event managers make event travel more sustainable?
2nd March 2016
Transportation issues are causing a variety of problems at events and affecting large amounts of co2 emissions to be released into the air.
Travel and transportation to events have a large impact on co2 emissions being released into the air. Event managers need to be aware of this and become more sustainable to help the environment. Event goers need to be informed about travel arrangements prior to the event to help give them other options than driving their own vehicle. Other travel options could potentially be, getting the train or bus to the event to help lower carbon emissions. Notifying event goers about travel options before the event may change the way people think about their method of transportation to help boost sustainability at events. England has a great variety of public transport whether it’s for a city based events with trains or tubes or a country side event, with specific event buses. However, event managers need to be aware of public transport and try to promote this method of travel to reduce environmental impacts.
‘Domestic transport accounts for one third of total carbon emissions, with passenger miles from leisure activities accounting for 39% of this,’ The Show Must Go On (2015).
Event managers need to be aware of sustainable transportation to reduce co2 emissions into the environment. There are a variety of ways in which event managers can help to lower emissions, which can happen if the event is carefully planned and ran.
What Can Be Done?
Lift Share – The most popular form of transportation to events is usually driving a car, people assume that it is the most logical and easiest way for event attendees to travel. This method of transportation is great when there is a car full of people, however there becomes a problem when there are empty seats. Event managers need to promote lift sharing at events to reduce on carbon emissions and boost sustainability at events. To promote lift sharing, there could be penalties for cars which aren’t full, or a charge determined on number of passengers, to create extra pressure for full cars, Jones (2010). Glastonbury has a GoCarShare scheme that let drivers connect with other festival goers to share lifts to help lower the number of cars attending, congestion and carbon emissions,Glastonbury, (2012).
Public Transport – Public transport is a great way to reduce on carbon emissions and start the event early for attendees. The Big Green Gathering charges £30 per vehicle for event parking, to help try and reduce car numbers. They also offer regular shuttle busses which go back and forth from town for event attendees to go to the nearest shops to stock up on supplies, to prevent people from driving, Green Gathering Charity (2013). When event attendees travel by public transport, it benefits the event as there are more parking spaces available and less co2 emissions being released, Hampshire (2015).
Incentives – Incentives are a great way to reward good behaviour which can be given out in a variety of forms, vouchers and discounts on parking, food or drinks. The UKs Download Festival has a programme in place which encourages people to use all seats in cars. When cars arrive at the festival parking attendants identify full cars and give them an opportunity to win VIP passes to get them special areas, Jones (2010).
When event mangers reduce transport co2 emissions at events it can have a variety of benefits:
- Improve reputation of event as they are showing they are dedicated to boosting the events sustainability
- Reduce expenditure, by using local products and cutting down on consumption can reduce spending and also cut down on waste and energy output
- Raise awareness, promoting sustainability to everyone at the event from event goers, staff, performing acts
- Benefit community, by using local suppliers reduces travel co2 emissions and benefits the area of where the event is being held.
- Influence other event managers, if an event receives positive reviews when ran in a sustainable way, it might encourage other event manager to become more green. Jones (2010)
Event managers need to promote green transportation at events to help reduce co2 emissions. Green ‘events’ and ‘meetings’ are becoming more popular in the events industry as they are minimising negative impacts in the environment, Bowdin (2011). If event managers follow green practice there are a variety of benefits towards the event mentioned earlier that can help boost event success. Responsible event leaders should follow through with green concepts when planning and running events to promote sustainable development for future events, Goldblatt (2011).