When we started organising the iEMSs 2012, lots of ideas were exchanged on how to put our conference title into practice for the conference itself. "What (more) can we do?" we asked ourselves. Some answers on this started spreading their seeds among all of us and being an eco-friendly meeting in all possible facets became one of the four pillars of the conference philosophy. Finally, much more actions were put into practice than we thought in the very
beginning, such as…
- Compensation of greenhouse gas emissions for the conference venue through a German initiative called "Moor Futures" (contact: Dr. Thorsten Permien, E-Mail: email@example.com), which concentrates on the protection of swamps in the Eastern part of Germany for climate protection and preservation of ecosystem and their services; however, for a more critical voice concerning carbon offsets see this comment for instance.
- Support of public transport: Tickets for local transport are freely available for all conference
- Catering: We decided on vegetarian food on the conference campus and included as much as possible organic and/or fair trade products with preference for regionally grown/produced food
- Reduce paper to a minimum: There is only one printed conference program per participant. So, please, take care of your program! Conference proceedings will be available only online. There is also a Conference App that gives access to most information on your smart phone;
- Conference bags: It´s not necessary to watch out for them ´cause there aren't any. Paper for notes will be available on individual demand basis in the seminar rooms; anything else that you would miss? Please ask for it at the registration desk, and get to know the people!
- Presents and gifts: Here you can recognize our wish to take over responsibility for the environment by supporting "GEO Rainforest Conservation", an independent registered charity, which is committed to preserve the tropical and subtropical forests world-wide while improving the living conditions of the people who inhabit forest regions (contact: Dr. Eva Danulat, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Finally, we invite you to further spread this seed!
Additional ideas on what one could do for further iEMSs conferences are more than welcome!
Photo: Carlos Zorrilla