ASAE takes seriously its pledge as a signatory of the Global Principles for Socially Responsible Associations & Nonprofits. Each year we purposely leverage the sustainability opportunities offered at our host city, hotels, and convention center to integrate eco-friendly operations and socially beneficial activities into every level of our meetings management.
You’ll see, for instance, many green innovations installed during the $279-million renovation Cobo Center, which received the Green Venues Michigan seal in part for its energy-efficient lighting, low-flow restaurant and kitchen equipment, and temperature- and water-conserving living green roof.
Impressively, the facility also produces zero waste, donating unserved food to Forgotten Harvest, a hunger relief nonprofit, and transforming non-recyclables into steam through Detroit Renewable Power.
Here are other ways ASAE is delivering on our sustainable meetings commitment in Detroit:
- You’ll be fashion-forward again when you don your biodegradable badge, lanyard, and ribbons. Expect your badge to be e-mailed for proofing prior to printing onsite; which saves money and carbon emissions from postal delivery.
- We again are distributing “green exhibitor” tips to vendors and exhibitors to attain their help in reducing waste, energy, and air pollution. And ASAE continues to provide its exhibitors with access to an online service kit so they can order onsite services, thus eliminating printed copies for 400 exhibitors..
- ASAE’s popular legacy service projects are called Community Connections. We’ve worked closely with the Detroit organizing committee to ensure these hands-on and philanthropic activities address uniquely local social challenges. With their guidance, we’ve set up ways to support this year’s worthy charity, Alternatives for Girls, which helps homeless and high-risk young women avoid violence, teen pregnancy, and exploitation, and provides support to ensure their safety and positive life choices. We’re donating registration fees from the 5K fun run and insider tours to Alternatives for Girls, and we also invite your participation in several related in-person projects. Visit the ASAE Annual Meeting website to register for any or all of these events.
- In addition to an amazing music scene, Detroit has fabulous foods found only in the Motor City. We’re cooking up some memorable culinary experiences using healthy, seasonal, and locally sourced ingredients designed to rev up your brain for learning and your body for late-night dancing! (Bonus: It’s all served on reusable, biodegradable, and/or compostable dining ware.)
- Bring your comfy shoes—many host hotels are within safe, easy walking distance to the convention center, or you can catch our green shuttle service with fuel-efficient, eco-friendly operations. Don’t forget to register for the free ASAE Foundation’s Small Steps in the meeting app if you’d like to track your mileage!
- You can learn more about creating eco-friendly meetings by participating in ASAE’s “Green Safari for Meeting Professionals,” a jungle-themed sustainability tour Sunday through the behind-the-scene operations of the Marriott at Renaissance Center. Pre-registration required; space is limited to 30 association employees. Check the schedule for other social responsibility education such as sessions on ethics and good governance.
- Each host hotel chosen for you has sustainability programs in place. Learn about them on the “Greening the 2015 ASAE Annual Meeting & Exposition” section of the conference website before booking your stay, then participate while onsite. Actions that make a difference include reusing your linens, turning off hotel lights and TVs when unoccupied, walking or taking our shuttle, and recycling.
We sincerely thank Visit Detroit and our exhibitors/vendors for being enthusiastic partners in achieving our green vision. Please do your part as a “green attendee,” so we can reduce eco-impacts of our meeting, better the community, and create positive learning experiences.
Although we have tried to examine each planning step, each buying decision, each vendor choice with sustainability in mind, we know that we're on a constant journey as new innovations and services become available and cost-effective. While we are excited about what we have accomplished so far, we ask that you please do your part as a “green attendee,” so we can reduce eco-impacts of our meeting, better the community, and create a positive learning experience.
We'll be updating this information regularly, so check back often to monitor our progress and feel free to share suggestions with Amy Ledoux, firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information on the Global Principles or the ASAE Convene Green Alliance, visit www.asaecenter.org/srprinciples or www.convenegreen.com. You also can find plenty of sustainability resources, cases, tools, and news at www.asaecenter.org/socialresponsibility.