Qatar Green Building Council Launches Eco-Event Award to Promote a Sustainable Events Industry

Oct 06, 2020 by Qatar Foundation

Award qualification encourages commitment to sustainable practice  

In line with its commitment to guide the establishment of sustainable and resilient communities which foster the health and well-being of people and planet through a low-carbon, Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC) has announced the launch of the “Eco-Event Award” in conjunction with the release of “Envisioning a Sustainable Future for Events”, the first edition of QGBC’s new publication series. The award program aims to build a culture of sustainability within the events industry.

Aiming at raising sustainability standards within Qatar’s burgeoning events industry, Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC) has launched its “Eco-Event Award” program. Designed to reward industry best sustainability practices, the program aligns with QGBCs commitment to establishing sustainable, healthy, and resilient communities through creating a low-carbon culture. Event planners aspiring for an award will find plenty of advice on building a more sustainable industry culture in QGBCs new accompanying publication series “Envisioning a Sustainable Future for Events”.

The launch of the Eco-Event Award program was announced at a virtual event hosted by Hamoda Youssef, Head of Technical Affairs, QGBC, with Meshal Al Shamari, Director; Ruba Hinnawi, Technical Specialist; and Shireen Obeidat, Events & Marketing Specialist, participating as speakers. The event gave an overview of the new publication, and discussed the award’s application and accreditation mechanics, as well as the social, environmental, and economic benefits of promoting low-carbon events for Qatar as a whole.

Qatar's events industry has been growing steadily over the years, and, while such development is economically favourable, events can leave a considerable carbon footprint, creating compounding damage to the environment and human lives.

Engineer Meshal Al Shammari, Director, QGBC, said: “Over the past decade, Qatar has become a MICE destination (meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions) by hosting a growing number of international and national conferences, exhibitions, festivals, tournaments, and major events. Coupled with the national vision that embraces sustainability, a framework to guide organizers in staging eco-friendly events became a necessity, given the excessive carbon footprint such events generate. The Eco-Event Award showcases sustainability at all stages of an event as practical aapplications of low-carbon practices.

The Eco-Event Award also focuses on educating stakeholders and the community about sustainable best practices to develop a low-carbon culture of event organization.

Hamoda Youssef, Head of Technical Affairs, QGBC, said: “QGBC advocates for a more sustainable, environmentally friendly events industry. With an award scheme that has scalable guidance aligned with established international standards, it aims to encourage event owners and organizers to deliver environmentally sustainable events regardless of scale.

“We aim to show pathways of how events can be sustainable. Whatever your event, there is always a way to be more sustainable.”

The Eco-Event Award has 11 categories and three levels of acknowledgments to establish a wide adoption of low-carbon practices and cultural acceptance of environmentally friendly events. Each level equates to the owner or organizer’s level of commitment and experience in delivering sustainable events. Qualifying for level one certification is free, while levels two and three require registration fees.

Additionally, the award utilizes a checklist model, which helps to ensure that the registration process is simple.

As Qatar Sustainability Week 2020 approaches, QGBC is encouraging organizations to participate in the award, particularly those planning to take part in the week-long event.

Shireen Obeidat, Events & Marketing Specialist, QGBC, said: “In the last four years, whenever we spoke to partners about organizing their events during the week, we always provided information on things they can manage, such as water and energy consumption, and procurement methods, to become more sustainable. This year, we would like events taking part in the week to comply with the Eco-Events Award specifications and to at least qualify for level one.”

To qualify, the nominated event must be managed by an organizer with an appropriate legal status, complying with local, communal, and indigenous rights. The owner or organizer is responsible for implementing the Eco-Event Award criteria and, as such, must have appropriate authority over the event.

QGBC is a member of Qatar Foundation. Nominations for the Eco-Event Award are now open, and those interested in certifying their event can do so by filling out an application form available for download at: https://www.qatargbc.org/programs/ecoevent.


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