In a world grappling with environmental challenges, the Greengage Insights Sustainability Conference and Awards emerged as a beacon of hope, bringing together visionaries, thought leaders, and change-makers to share insights and celebrate outstanding contributions to sustainability in the hospitality world. The event, held at QEII Centre, London, showcased a collective commitment to forging a path toward a more sustainable future.
The conference kicked off with an address from Greengage CEO Andrew Perolls whose speech brought home the importance of doing what you can within your own world, and emphasised the pivotal role that businesses, governments, and most importantly individuals play in fostering more sustainable practices.
Next on the agenda was Former Global Head of Travel Meeting & Event at Ernst & Young, Karen Hutchings who took to the stage with an upbeat but clinical talk. Karen talked about the importance of not just saying that we will do things at businesses, but actually putting those ideas into policy demonstrating that they are being put into practice.
‘Less talk more action’ was a key theme across the afternoon with one panel discussion detailing how obtaining data is one thing, but taking action with it is imperative. Founder of Thrust Carbon, Mark Corbett stated “It’s all about making different decisions. The easier we can make it look and feel, the easier people will take action.” This is a message that Director of Operations at INNTEL, Anna Snoep reiterated “You need to break it down so that people can become engaged and not disconnected through feeling overwhelmed by change.”
The afternoon’s second talk came from Head of Business Sustainability at Silverstone, Stephane Bazire. In what was an insightful presentation, Stephane went into the granular detail of how exactly Silverstone, the home of British motorsport, is repositioning efforts to become a more sustainable venue, including the power created from their 2,764 solar panels installed onto the roof of their winged meetings and events space above their iconic Formula One paddock. The solar panels generate over 10 per cent of the venue’s total power – just one of the small steps toward the venue’s goal to become net-zero by 2030. Stephane’s advice to the audience “It’s all about educating your team before you can roll sustainability governance out, you have to work towards goals together as a venue”.
Further talks across the afternoon came from World Record breaking cyclist and Climate Adventurer, Kate Strong who reminded the audience that true leadership is to do something for the greater good, not just immediate gains, as well as Technology and Sustainability Entrepreneur, Johnny Palmer, who challenged attendees to influence those attending our events, so that they take new learnings into their everyday life.
The event closed with the Greengage Insights Sustainability Awards, recognising and honouring businesses, organizations, and individuals who have demonstrated exemplary commitment to sustainable practices. The award categories spanned the sector, including hotels, accommodation, meeting venues, travel and event management, with some of the most forward-thinking minds in sustainability picking up accolades for their efforts.
In the wake of the conference, it is evident that sustainability is no longer a distant goal but an imperative one that demands immediate and concerted action by every individual.