How We Create a Sustainable Event

Sustainability is at the core of our mandate. So it is no surprise that sustainability is integral part of the EBRD Annual Meeting and Business Forum. This important event in the Bank’s annual calendar became carbon neutral for the first time in 2013 and this is now a standard practice. For 2020, we aim to follow the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a roadmap to reduce the event’s footprint, offset unavoidable emissions, support local communities and increase participants’ awareness about their own footprint and the steps to minimise it.

Over recent years, we have taken vital steps to make the Annual Meeting and Business Forum sustainable, including:

    Reducing paper: We ceased printing promotional materials and documents and rely more on the event website, the mobile app and digital signatures. We encourage our valued sponsors, suppliers and participants to support these efforts towards a paperless event. 

    Reducing plastic: We source eco-friendly merchandise; bags made of recycled PET; lanyards made of bamboo; pens and pencils made of recycled or biodegradable materials; and flasks for participants that reduce the need for plastic bottles and disposable cups.

    Reducing food waste: We offer buffet lunches made from locally produced, seasonal food and, when possible, distribute any surplus to people in need. 

    Reducing and offsetting transport emissions: When the event is outside the UK we provide a shuttle bus service to and from the airport, hotel and venue/s for all participants. The travel emissions, particularly flight emissions, account for most of the event’s carbon footprint. These emissions are offset by purchasing carbon credits from an EBRD-funded energy efficiency project. Importantly, the event venues are selected to be within walking distance from each other whenever possible, to avoid the need for transport.

    Supporting the community: We hire local staff to support us deliver various aspects of the event. Event stationery and other materials are donated to the local community after the event. 


Green actions are ongoing and event participants can also make a difference. Look out for regular updates and suggestions for the different ways to get involved! 

For more information visit the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) website.