GSA's Green Meetings
In furtherance of GSA’s mission in promoting stewardship of the earth, GSA works continuously to minimize the environmental impacts associated with the planning and execution of all our meetings.
At the 2012 annual meeting, the Charlotte Convention Center has in place substantial green initiatives. We will be recycling cardboard, paper, cans/bottles, and other items there, and providing opportunities for attendees and exhibitors to participate as well.
Just a few of GSA’s other green efforts for the meeting include:
- Meeting program printed with 50% total recovered fiber (10% post-consumer).
- Rechargeable batteries in laser pointers and other devices
- Electronic lead retrieval for exhibitors
- Water stations (instead of bottled water)
- Program and badge recycling
- Carbon offset program
Tips for Traveling Greener
GSA continues to work on greening our meetings, but did you know there are things that you can do as well? Here is a list of a few items to consider when travelling.
- Power down your house before you leave. Unplug all phantom power vampires (power strips and the like). Close blinds. Turn down water heater.
- Take documents needed for the meeting on your devices (laptop, smartphone), not paper (or at least print double-sided).
- Pack light.
- Bring your own covered reusable drink container, non-disposable utensils (bamboo is excellent: light and washable, instead of taking plastic take-out utensils) and a cloth shopping bag.
- Use rechargeable batteries for your devices.
- Green hierarchy of transportation: walk, bike, public transit, car or van pool, car, train, plane (and the green models of each of these are best, such as hybrid vehicles).
- Fly coach/economy (more seats per plane).
- If you rent a car, get the smallest practical model, or a hybrid one.
- Car/van pool if driving (or otherwise try to choose greener methods of transit).
- Donate to carbon offset funds to offset your trip’s carbon footprint.
- Choose a hotel close to the venue, restaurants and public transit, so you can choose greener on the transportation scale.
- Don't buy travel sized toiletries (or reuse them) or use the hotel-supplied amenities (unless the hotel only replaces them when low, and donates unused items to charitable organizations). Use your own small reusable containers for toiletries, or save small remaining amounts in regular size ones for travel and then recycle those empty containers before you come home. Keep soap in your own container so it's not replaced every day.
- Don't have your room cleaned every day; participate in the hotel’s linen and towel reuse program.
- Don’t use room service because it uses more resources (and things such as one-use ketchup bottles, jam, etc.).
- Turn off lights, unplug device chargers, and re-set HVAC when not in use and when leaving the room.
- Conserve water (as you do at home).
- Recycle materials in appropriate bins.
- Give feedback to the hotel about their green practices (or lack thereof) to create consumer-driven demand for better green practices.
- Eat local, vegetarian and/or sustainable (especially seafood).
- Don't take paper and plastic from takeout (use the items you brought with you or request aluminum foil or waxed paper).
- Buy a water bottle filter and drink tap water, or buy larger size bottled water instead to use during your stay.
- Read newspapers online.