When you see epic, over the top costumes and massive hedge walls, it’s hard to think Wow Factor, yet sustainable. The Events industry is alway looking for the next biggest, newest shiny. Whether it's a blockbuster movie or just a commercial, the focus is on the finished product rather than things like efficiency or post-production waste management. The different facets of the entertainment industry are not known for trailblazing the efficacy of sustainability. However, we at Firestorm Talent & Entertainment feel the need for change. Environmental consulting firm EcoSet estimates that commercials in the United States produce 18 million pounds of waste annually.
I recently walked the IMEX America halls, and the push for sustainable entertainment was clear. There were opportunities to join a Green Pledge, encouraged guests to take public transit or carpool, support local businesses and used recycled packaging for the lunch menu. I applauded their out-of-the-box thinking and strategies to encourage growth in these areas.
What I learned:
Catering - purchase dishes from recycled sources. Silverware can look elegant and be recyclable. Allow the food to be taken home after, rather than thrown away.
Travel - encourage guests to carpool, walk, or take a shuttle to the event all at once! This can make for fun conversation starters
Lighting - Use of lights to limit the need for decor, lights can be changed out to create “new” decor or frame a cake, create an archway for photos and liven any event. Best yet, they don’t use any new raw materials!
Sign in - Check in guests electronically, rather than using table cards or badges
In the course of my wandering, I realized that while the event was focused for event planners, the concept of the sustainable performer was left in the dark. How do you constantly create something new and fantastic while utilizing resources already in use? It felt like an entire sector of entertainment had been forgotten.
When talking about this subject with event planners, it almost seems taboo, or nonsensical, or something to leave out of the conversation. It is such a large task to think this way. We will be going over how we solve these riddles in our blog “Reuse, Recycle”. In the meantime, we are happy to focus some Love to the earth by contributing all we can to protecting it. Have a great Valentine's!