The Convention Industry Council’s Accepted Practices Exchange Panel on Green Meeting and Event Practices has released the final draft of its green meetings standards and is now encouraging review and comment by the meetings industry. City discussion groups to review the standards are planned in five cities before mid-September, with more soon to be scheduled.

The process of developing the green standards has been a partnership between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Green Meeting Industry Council, and APEX to create uniform measures for a meeting’s or event’s environmental performance. The standards cover nine topic areas: accommodations, audiovisual, communication, exhibits, food and beverage, on-site office, destinations, meeting venue, and transportation.

“These standards are an attempt to create a level playing field of what constitutes ‘green’ for the industry,” says Karen Kotowski, CMP, CAE, COO of the Convention Industry Council, adding that the standards “will not remain static but will incorporate revisions as necessary to maintain relevancy.”

The draft standards have also been submitted to the ASTM International for review in order to achieve accreditation.

The schedule at press time for APEX City Discussion Groups is:

  • Atlanta, August 26
  • Denver, September 1
  • Baltimore, September 3
  • San Antonio, September 9
  • Washington, September 11.

For times and locations or to register for any of the city discussion groups, click here. Additional discussions are expected to be planned for Boston; Fort Meyers, Fla.; Winnipeg, Manitoba; and San Francisco. The Green Meeting and Events Standards are also available for review and comment on a new blog site. All comments are due by September 11, after which time the standards will be submitted to ASTM in a final format. Organizers expect the final standards to be approved by both ASTM and the APEX Commission by the end of the year.