Towards Zero Waste

In addition to helping create more efficient, inclusive and sustainable cities, we also want to set an example and become a sustainable event.

Smart City Expo World Congress works towards creating efficient, inclusive and sustainable cities – so naturally, the show should lead by example. Towards Zero Waste is a dedicated sustainability initiative, started back in 2016 by SCEWC, in line with the European Commission’s Circular Economy strategy based on use of fewer materials, reuse and recycling of products, and no food waste.

ACTIONS CARRIED OUT IN 2021

SMALL ACTIONS MAKE A BIG IMPACT

Planting trees for the planet

Last year, we took another step forward with a new reforestation initiative in collaboration with Plant for the Planet, an organisation that aims to raise awareness amongst children and adults about the issues of climate change and global justice. All money raised from your donations helped us plant 5,000 trees for the Planting for Doñana reforestation project.

A NEW CIRCULAR DECORATION CONCEPT

Venue decoration went circular

In 2021, all of our venue decoration was carried out using circular materials. We did so by reusing the same structures that are used to assemble our modular stand packs (see insert) when putting together our decorative elements.

Avoiding single-use plastics

We once again said goodbye to single-use plastics at the event, preventing 1,195 kg of disposable plastic items. All drinks for sale were distributed in glass containers and our catering menus avoided plastic packaging, while coffee machines and one-dose capsules were replaced by coffee thermos and vending machines were also disabled.

Reducing CO2e emissions

All emissions generated by the event were offset by buying Verified Emission Reduction Carbon Credits for sustainable projects. Attendees could do the same with the emissions associated with their journey and their stay in Barcelona via Clean CO2. Last year, 209,000 CO2e emissions were compensated.
Clean_CO2

Using less paper

As part of our efforts to become a paperless event, we set up QR code points at strategic places throughout the venue for downloading the event app. We also had digital press corners instead of paper magazines, and all paper used at the stands was collected for recycling at the end of the event, which represented 48 kg of paper waste saved.

Recycling

All lanyards, passes and pass holders were made from recycled materials, and could be discarded at the return point to be recycled again after the event. Special containers for separating waste were distributed across the venue, with dedicated volunteers to help visitors, recycling a total amount of 3,440 kg of waste.

Reducing and reusing

We reused 105 kg of decoration materials, including carpet and other items from several booths and communal areas. All of them were donated to several local associations.

No food waste

22.5 kg of retrieved food were collected and donated to the NGO Nutrition Without Borders, to be distributed by community kitchens.

WHAT WE ACHIEVED IN 2021

209,000

tons of CO2e compensation

1,195

kg of single-use plastics prevented

3,440

kg of waste collection

105

kg of materials reused

1,010

accreditations returned

48

kg of paper waste saved

Organizers

Co-located events

And there’s more…