Tips for Planning a Sustainable Event


Loyola University Chicago is a leading destination for green meetings and events in downtown Chicago and the Midwest. While many meeting planners are intimidated by the process, it is actually a lot easier (and cheaper) than you may think. Even if just a couple strategies are implemented, a measurable impact can be made by each event.  Check out our detailed checklist from venue selection to communication efforts on how you can begin reducing your carbon footprint and save your organization time and resources.



Venue Selection

  • Select a LEED certified or energy efficient building/ venue
  • Choose a convenient venue that is centrally located for all attendees
  • Turn off lights when not in venue
  • Turn off audio/visual when not in venue


  • Choose a LEED certified building with a green roof
  • Select a housing facility that measures energy usage
  • Encourage guests to turn off lights when not in room
  • Opt for a housing location that is close to event venue
  • Ask if energy efficient light bulbs are used
  • Request that guests reuse linens/ towels for the duration of their stay
  • Ask if organic toiletries are available




  • Select a conference destination that is easily accessible by all attendees
  • Use public transportation
  • Offer shuttle or bus service for conference guests
  • Encourage carpooling or taxi sharing
  • Provide guests with walking/ bike maps

 Food & Beverage

  • Prohibit the usage of bottled water; give guests a reusable water bottle upon arrival
  • Request reusable plates, glassware, cutlery, tablecloths, and napkins
  • Ensure all staff are trained on separating recyclables
  • Request that attendees RSVP to get accurate guest count and only order that amount of food
  • Reduce meat items and serve vegan, vegetarian, or seafood items
  • Consider serving local produce and organic menu items
  • Avoid ordering items that are individually packaged (i.e., individual packets of cream, sugar)
  • Have leftover food donated to food shelter


  • Send all conference correspondence to attendees electronically
  • Use electronic documents/ file sharing
  • Offer an event app for conference attendees to access during event
  • Use double-sided printing on 100% recycled paper, when necessary
  • Promote using laptops/ iPads for note taking
  • Reuse signage
  • Have attendees bring their own name badges
  • If using bags, purchase organic reusable cotton or bags made from 100% recycled materials


For any tips or advice feel free to reach out to us at or 773-508-8090. Otherwise, to learn about Loyola University Chicago’s sustainability efforts on and around campus visit,


About Loyola University Chicago - Conference Services

Offering unique and affordable event solutions, Loyola University Chicago has five premier campuses (Lake Shore, Water Tower, Retreat and Ecology, Cuneo Mansion and Gardens, and Health Sciences) in downtown Chicago and the western suburbs in which to host your overnight conference, day meeting, special event, or house visiting guests. Select from fully furnished apartment style suites, state-of-the-art meeting facilities, advanced technology services, gourmet catering, and plentiful university resources. To learn more about our facilities contact Loyola Conference Services at or 773.508.8090 or visit


Posted By: Renee Mula

On: July 02, 2018