we’ve estimated the carbon emissions of the event and took action to reduce those emissions;
we have offsett the carbon emissions which we couldn’t avoid and;
our efforts were verified by a third party (CO2logic).
WHAT HAVE WE DONE?
In order to keep the CO2 emissions of the Future Forward Summit as low as possible, we made conscious choices in terms of location, catering, mobility and use of materials. An overview and description of our efforts can be found here (unfortunately only in Dutch). Through this overview of efforts but also learning points, we hope to inspire you for your next events.
We were pretty clean!
The calculated CO2 footprint of the Future Forward Summit is 20 tons of CO2 equivalents. This emission corresponds to the emission of 8 return flights Brussels - New York (in economy class). As you can see in this chart, about 95% of total emissions is due to mobility (mainly participants who came by plane).
Energy consumption of infrastructure: CO2 emissions due to infrastructure used used for the event were kept very low (99 kg CO2) because the event took place in an energy-efficient building.
In addition > 98% of the energy was green electricity. The remaining <2% is natural gas for heating water. The rest of the heating was done by heat pumps and therefore requires no fossil energy.
If we start from a similar (indoor) event that uses conventional energy sources (natural gas for heating and grey electricity for all electricity needs) and with average EPC values, the CO2 emissions for that event are estimated at 1867 kg CO2. This means that the Future Forward scores 95% less than these expected emissions.
By offering only vegetarian meals, CO2 emissions were reduced to 234 kg CO2. If we start from classic meals, which mainly contain more meat, we expect a CO2 emission of 851 kg. That means we've saved up to 73% of kilo's of CO2 on meals. (We take into account the bread lunch, the conference dinner and the meals in Le Phare, not the snacks and drinks.)
More information about the calculation of the CO2 footprint of the Future Forward Summit and the assumptions used for this calculation you can find here (only in Dutch).
Improved cookstoves in Uganda
The 20 tons of CO2 of the Future Forward Summit is compensated by supporting the 'Saving Trees' project in Uganda. Saving Trees supports the spread of improved cookstoves in the country. In Uganda 95% of the population relies on wood and charcoal for daily cooking and as a result deforestation has become a serious problem. This project promotes widespread access to improved wood stoves throughout the country. The Saving Trees project is Gold Standard certified. More information about the project to offset the CO2 emissions of the Summit can be found on the website of Saving Trees.