New green meeting standards produced by the Convention Industry Council’s Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX) and the American Society for Testing and Materials International (ASTM) were released on February 16. The standards, the first of their kind for meetings, are now available for purchase by meeting professionals in seven of the nine established industry sectors.

The standards were initially conceptualized by the Green Meeting Industry Council in discussion with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and have been in development for four years. The APEX/ASTM standards have been developed for nine areas of the meetings industry, covering all facets of event planning and management. Meeting professionals now have access to standards in seven or those areas, audiovisual, communication and marketing materials, destinations, exhibits, food and beverage, on-site office, and transportation.

The only two standards that have not yet been published are accommodations, which is undergoing final balloting through ASTM, and meeting venue, which is currently being prepared for publication. Each of the standards will address specific sustainable elements: staff management and environmental policy, communications, waste, energy, air quality, water, procurement, and community partners.

Much of the work was done by the APEX Green Meetings and Events Practice Panel, consisting of 300 planners, suppliers, and sustainability experts from across nine time zones. ASTM International provided comprehensive input, review, and feedback from its technical experts, engineers, materials scientists, and sustainability experts across the globe.

Those interested in creating more sustainable meetings and in learning about the new standards can attend the Green Meeting Industry Council Sustainable Meetings Conference, April 22-25, at the Hilton Montreal Bonaventure. The core design of the conference embeds the framework of the APEX/ASTM sustainable meeting standards in an exciting and interactive environment. Participants will explore measurement techniques, reporting methods, sustainable supply-chain management, cutting-edge hybrid meeting technologies, and the significance of sustainability strategy on a global level.

The standards are available for individual purchase at the cost of $40 to $46 each through ASTM International. They can be purchased in electronic and paper formats. After all nine standards are completed, they will be available for purchase individually or as one specially priced compilation at a cost to be determined. For more information on the standards and to view a complete list of the volunteers who contributed to the project, visit the CIC Web site.

To purchase the standards, go to the ASTM Web site.