IMEX’ Net Zero Strategy “Depends on Collaboration”

Tuesday, 22.08.2023
The IMEX Group has made a move on its journey to net-zero with the public launch of its Net Zero Strategy. This outlines IMEX’s roadmap to deliver net-zero events and operate a net-zero business by 2030. The roadmap is part of its commitment to the industry-wide Net Zero Carbon Events (NZCE) initiative – and IMEX… Read More »
Photo: IMEX Group

The IMEX Group has made a move on its journey to net-zero with the public launch of its Net Zero Strategy. This outlines IMEX’s roadmap to deliver net-zero events and operate a net-zero business by 2030.

The roadmap is part of its commitment to the industry-wide Net Zero Carbon Events (NZCE) initiative – and IMEX intends to reach net-zero by 2030, ahead of the 2050 target set out by NZCE in line with the Paris Agreement. According to a press release. IMEX’s Net Zero Strategy is an expression of its “new vision” of “a thriving global events industry focused on positive change”.

IMEX was an early signatory to the NZCE’a pledge and is committed to long-term reduction and mitigation of event emissions. Its strategy focuses on reducing Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions in the course of producing both IMEX Frankfurt and IMEX America shows each year.

In the process, the company sees collaboration across the supply chain as key to achieving its goal. IMEX will therefore “work closely with exhibitors and stand constructors to gradually increase the percentage of reusable and sustainable materials used in building each show”. The team will reportedly also “work with suppliers to gather data that provides a comprehensive emissions footprint” for a baseline that will then guide future reduction decisions. This data is going to include numerous indirect greenhouse gas impacts, including emissions from food production, as well as attendee, exhibitor, and staff travel.

Partners, MeetGreen, have worked with IMEX for over a decade to measure and report on the shows’ sustainability achievements. The Sustainable Event Report for IMEX America 2022 has just been released which makes public the show’s energy usage, F&B, materials consumption, reuse and its community impact and more.

Highlights include a landfill diversion rate of 92 percent and over 191,000 kilowatt-hours of renewable solar energy generated by MGM which powered activities at the venue, Mandalay Bay Convention Center. This, along with a range of recycling, composting and donation efforts resulted in IMEX America once more reaching the industry threshold for a zero-waste event.

This measurement is set to now be expanded as IMEX embarks on the next phase of its emissions accounting and management journey through a new partnership with events industry body isla. Using its platform TRACE, IMEX will measure and report on travel emissions for everyone attending the shows – with results available in a few months. Building on this investment, the team has recently issued an RFP in search of a suitable carbon offsetting supplier.

Carina Bauer, CEO of the IMEX Group, explains: “Initially we’re focussing on areas that we can fully control, such as the type of energy we use. Then we’ll expand to areas where we can have significant impact, for example waste management and the materials used in our supply chain. Finally, we will be measuring the impact of travel and when we’re able to, we’ll report on this further.”

Bauer continues: “Our roadmap isn’t just about IMEX achieving net-zero, but encouraging and leading others to do the same. This positive change can only happen if organisations look beyond their own journey to net-zero and recognise that we’re all part of a wider ecosystem that needs to work together.”