GREEN MEETINGS: Six eco-friendly convention centres

13 Jan 2010

Major convention centres around the world have stepped up in enabling companies to lower the carbon footprints of their meetings and events. Below is a snapshot of green initiatives being implemented by venue operators worldwide.


Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok Convention Centre (BCC) has a programme called CEPPER, which stands for community, eco-technology, partnerships, products, education and recycle. Each element represents the different areas where  environmental protection is being addressed. The multi-pronged programme ensures that green initiatives are not being done in isolation from each other and that they will have an impact beyond the centre itself.

In its daily operations, BCC promotes a green meeting package and has standardised practices for sustainable meetings. Recycling is applied where appropriate. For one, host companies can arrange for leftover food to be donated to the local community after their event. Water is served in glass bottles only and BCC encourages organisers to use biodegradable material in their events.

Address: 1695 Phaholyothin Road, Chatuchak, Bangkok, 10900, Thailand



California, United States

The Los Angeles Convention Centre (LACC) has a roof that reflects heat from the sun away from the building, which reduces the demand for air-conditioning. Also, solar panels are installed above the parking lot, generating 450,000 kilowatts of clean electricity to the centre.

In a bid to divert waste materials away from landfills, LACC began a recycling programme in 2000. The centre re-use office products from paper to ink cartridges. A unique practice is its debris-recycling, where the LACC expects to recycle 75 percent of building materials used in events by 2015.  

Address: Los Angeles Convention Centre, 1201 South Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA 90015



Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Simply known as The Centre, Malaysia’s premier venue for meetings and business events, follows a sustainable and green programme that is at par with the best in the region. Recycling is the norm as is the use of energy-saving fixtures such as solar panel and motion sensors.  

The Centre also offers companies meeting plans that incorporate greener options.

Meanwhile, among the centre’s noteworthy green initiatives are: the careful thought in the design and production of backdrops and props to ensure the items can be reused for future events with minimal touch up and alteration; the use of battery-operated forklifts and buggies to ensure reduced amount of burnt fuel; and, the use of more biodegradable cleaning chemicals, cutting down the number of detergents from 32 to 24.

Address: Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Kuala Lumpur City Centre, 50088 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia



Melbourne, Australia

The Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) is renowned for achieving a 6 Star Green Star environmental rating from the Green Building Council of Australia. The centre has a blackwater treatment plant that collects and treats wastewater for toilet flushing, irrigation and cooling purposes. MCEC is fitted with solar hot water systems that can offset more than 40 percent of general hot water requirements and can provide 100 percent of public amenity hot water requirements.

MCEC has an effective ventilation displacement method – low level air delivery and high level air exhaust in the plenary hall and foyer areas provide effective air flow with high indoor air quality at low energy consumption. Furthermore, electricity is saved using natural light to illuminate the foyer and pre-function spaces.

The centre’s catering department also sources locally produced food and wine to reduce carbon emission from transportation.

Address: 1 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf VIC 3006, Australia



Suntec City, Singapore

Suntec’s iconic pyramid-shaped glass roof collects rainwater that helps irrigates some of the 900 trees around Suntec City. Electricity and water-saving systems are installed to intelligently regulate suppy during busy and idle periods. The centre has also adopted the 3Rs (reduce, re-use, recycle) approach, finding ways to breath new life to aluminum, cardboard, glass, paper and plastic. Suntec even recycles cooking oil, converting it into biofuel.  Currently, the centre recycles 2,100 gallons (7,949 litres) of cooking oil into bio-diesel every year.

Address: 1 Raffles Boulevard, Suntec City, Singapore 039593



Vancouver, Canada

The centre has found new uses for half of its total waste generated every year through its proactive recycling programme. Their ‘scratch’ kitchen put together meals from local produce to cut down on carbon emission generated by transportation. Leftover food are donated to local charities, reducing food wastage. Daylight-sensing systems enables the centre to harness much natural sunlight to save on electricity. The centre also has an on-site water recycling system for grey and blackwater.

Address: 1055 Canada Place, Vancouver, BC V6C 0C3, Canada


Liu Hongzuo

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