Joint Meetings Industry Council calls for action to address climate crisis

The initiative comes as world leaders meet for COP26 in Glasgow to combat climate change.

The industry body is rallying event professionals towards a 2050 net-zero carbon goal.
The industry body is rallying event professionals towards a 2050 net-zero carbon goal. Photo Credit:Getty Images/girafchik123

Alarming evidence of the man-made climate crisis should be vitally important to meeting professionals, says Fiona Pelham, CEO of Positive Impact Events, who’s on a U.N.-supported mission to transform the global events sector, as detailed in Northstar’s recent Eventful podcast. Sadly, though, it has been very difficult to spur this industry into action, a topic she has discussed in-depth with Northstar.

To rally action, the Joint Meetings Industry Council (JMIC) launched Net Zero Carbon Events in October, an initiative that aims to engage the global events industry in committing to achieving net-zero carbon by 2050.

The initiative, supported by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC), comes as world leaders meet for COP26 (31 October to 12 November) in Glasgow, Scotland to present how their countries will achieve a 50% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030, fulfilling goals set by the Paris Agreement.

The Net Zero Carbon Events initiative aims to bring together a wide range of industry stakeholders to:

  • Jointly communicate our industry’s commitment to tackling climate change and driving toward net zero by 2050;
  • Develop common methodologies for measuring the industry’s direct, indirect and supply-chain greenhouse-gas emissions;
  • Construct an industrywide roadmap toward net zero by 2050, and emissions reductions by 2030, in line with the Paris Agreement, with support and guidance on key issues;
  • Foster collaboration with suppliers and customers to ensure alignment and common approaches; and
  • Establish common mechanisms for reporting progress and sharing best practices.

Born from a discussion with the UNFCCC secretariat, the initiative was developed by a task force made up of JMIC members: UFI – The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, the International Association of Convention Centres, and the International Congress and Convention Association.

They were joined by representatives from Emerald Expositions (US), Freeman (US), the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (China), Informa (UK), the Javits Center (US), MCI Group (Switzerland), Messe München (Germany), RX (Reed Exhibitions, UK) and the Scottish Event Campus (UK).

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