Committees | Sustainability Committee

This is a wave that is coming at us and it is going to impact how we operate going forward.

Sustainability Committee Chair – Sarah Chew


Committee Objectives

  • To create a mutual understanding of the value of sustainability as a community.
  • To make our community understand the business opportunities of sustainable event solutions
  • To promote greater awareness through knowledge sharing
  • To encourage our community to adopt global standards and best practices
  • To achieve greater sustainability by aligning with other industry associations

IFES has pledged to support and promote the Net Zero Carbon Events initiative amongst members.


Our Sustainability Roadmap

Better than yesterday, less than tomorrow…

As a first-mover with strong convictions around the implementation of Sustainability into the DNA of the Exhibitions and Events industry, IFES takes responsibility by committing the association and our members to contribute to a common understanding and a joint and collaborative roadmap for sustainable development.

On a global level, IFES takes responsibility within the Net Zero Carbon Events (NZCE) Initiative and Leads a work Stream called „Smart production and Waste Management“

Collaboration is key and that is why we work together with national and international associations to have a transparent and synchronized roadmap for our industry.

The appointment of a dedicated manager of the Sustainability Portfolio within IFES Management Team member in 2022 is assisting with consciously and continuously driving this agenda.

The IFES Sustainability Survey in October 21 showed that 11 out of 35 respondents had achieved sustainability certification. Key drivers were to enhance reputation and strengthen client, supplier and partner relationships, achieve cost savings on material, consumption, waste and energy, and to reduce carbon emissions footprint across entire industry supply chain.

78.3% of survey respondents had already incorporated sustainability measures into their organisations. We continue to promote knowledge-sharing amongst our members and assist them on their sustainability journeys.

The 2022 World Summit in Amsterdam reiterated the urgency of changing perspective and adopting Sustainability as an attitude with presentations around the Net Carbon Initiative and how to manage the “Expectations of the Service Provider industry.”

A dedicated session dubbed “Stay Sustainable with Sustainability” presented case studies, roadmaps and best practice around ISO 20121 ending with the resounding message that we have no time to waste, start SIMPLE, start NOW!






Join NZCE Now to Protect the Future of Events

Click to join NZCE

The value of the Net Zero Carbon Events initiative  to our industry is clear and immediate. Action on climate is directly related to the continuity of our industry, of our business.

Through participation your organisation will benefit from the collaborative process which will underpin the work, expanding your own knowledge on climate action, providing connections for your teams with experts around the world, and ensure your communications and reporting is integrated with wider industry messaging, so that your progress can directly feed into that of the whole events industry.

Learn more about the pledge:

For those who are already signatories of Net Zero Carbon Events, please remember that you pledged to define and publish your pathway to net zero by the end of 2023, to communicate and act upon your commitment across your value chain, as well as to track your Scope 1, 2, and 3 greenhouse gas emissions and report them every second year. You may find more information under



While sustainability may be the license this industry needs to operate in the future; pandemic-impacted IFES SMEs may struggle to run higher cost investments towards sustainability. IFES , together with .fwd  devised a convoy concept to support the international ISO standard under 20121, providing collaborative training at lower costs.

The 8-10 month program is mostly run in on-line sessions consisting of groups of max. ten participants but also offers individual consultation. Two convoys are currently in full swing,  while the third will start in November 2023.

Read here the feedback of two of our convoy participants (Benedict Meissner, ewi worldwide, and Laureen Pahl, Holtmann+)

If you are interested to become part of the ISO 20121 training yourself, please contact Dominique Bohler from our office for additional information ([email protected]).



EuroShop 2023IFES World Summit in SingaporeData gathering
A booth dedicated solely to the topic of sustainability at Trade Fairs demonstrated the different processes around an exhibition booth from a new perspective, showcasing best practices from planning & conception, logistics, implementation, catering, and smart waste management. This was a partner initiative between .fwd, IFES and Messe Dusseldorf itself.

Global Village

Using mainly reusable, or at least recycled and recyclable materials for the IFES Global Village Booth at EuroShop 23, enabled the building of a 500 sqm booth with only 16 tons of CO2 emissions. Those were completely offset with gold standard certificates supporting a windfarm project in Turkey.

The 500 sqm carpet from Montecolino was completely recycled and is now used as cardboard flatpack furniture.

In addition to choosing an ISO 14001 certified hotel in Singapore, IFES made use of onsite meeting rooms to tremendously reduce the amount of transportation required during the conference.

With multiple sessions, presentations, and panels, much of the program unpacked sustainability approaches in Singapore and South-East Asia raising awareness around what can and has been done.

IFES also emphasized a healthy lifestyle, organising a guided morning run around the Marina Bay area, a Tai Chi break, and a very active tourist program at the end of the World Summit. While the one group participating in the tourist program explored different green aspects of Singapore by bike, the others even contributed to it by fishing and collecting sea plastic around the city.

The International Federation of Exhibition and Event Services (IFES) is assisting Richmond University in London with the elaboration of representative research which aims to analyze ESG motivators within the industry. After conducting multiple focus groups among IFES members the scientists developed a survey which has now been sent to all the different stakeholders around the IFES community for their input. We eagerly await the results of this first comparative analysis within our industry.


Needle punch carpet: event comfort, environmental care

  Alma has been producing 100% Made in Italy needle-punch carpets since 1976 for the temporary setup sector, including trade shows and events. All Alma products...

Best practices to reduce CO2

Best practices to reduce CO2 – Sustainable Materials: Opt for environmentally friendly materials such as recycled, recyclable, or renewable resources for stand...

Learn more about us

The Sustainable Committee


Sarah Chew: sarahchew[@]
Jorg Zeissig: joerg.zeissig[@]

Pin It on Pinterest

Shopping cart0
There are no products in the cart!