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DCVB and local MICE suppliers ramp up green efforts

The Daegu Convention and Visitors Bureau
The Daegu Convention and Visitors Bureau (DCVB) along with local Meeting, Incentives, Conferencing and Exhibitions (MICE) Suppliers continue to make progress in furthering sustainable and environmentally friendly efforts.  The two groups have done so by improving the venues that house events, reducing paper/food waste and taking better care of its surroundings.  Progress from the city of Daegu itself further amplifies these efforts.

The “Be a Green Man” and “Green Zone” campaigns are at the forefront of their efforts.  In conjunction, they allowed the DCVB and MICE Suppliers to substantially lower the effect large-scale events had on the local environment. 

“Be a Green Man” was an initiative to directly involve participants in a broader environmental responsibility mission while the “Green Zone” was an area located in the lobby of major events typically near the registration desk or on the exhibition floor.  It was a highly visible space aimed at showing delegates, exhibitors and visitors how they can be more environmentally responsible.

Specifically, these two sought to not only educate but also to enact tangible change. The reduction of paper materials and implementation of reusable products has perhaps made the biggest difference.  Banners, flyers, nametags, lanyards and signs are reused as often as possible.  Drinks like coffee and tea are offered in ceramic glasses that are returned by attendees and then washed for future use, drastically reducing paper waste. 

Paper waste is reduced even more with greater digitization of materials.  Online brochures, the increased use of NFC (Near Field Communication) and scanning QR (Quick Response) Codes to transmit documents and information have led to a precipitous decline in wasted paper.

In addition to the aforementioned “Green Campaigns”, significant efforts were made to better event venues.  The EXCO (Exhibition and Convention) center houses nearly all major MICE events.  Therefore, it’s of the utmost importance that it be a physical beacon of sustainability.  It is equipped with the largest solar power system in Korea for an independent building.  Furthermore, a large-scale energy regeneration system was installed in 2011 making it the world’s best “Green Convention Center”. 

Recently, the DCVB and Daegu MICE Alliance held a MICE Day that brought many of these efforts to light.  Online invitations were used in lieu of paper.  Ceramic and glass cups were offered instead of disposable ones.  Nametags were recycled as participants exited.  Lunch boxes were made of locally sourced organic ingredients with some of the profits donated back into the community.  Even the event’s Christmas tree was donated to a children’s center at the end of the day. 

The aforementioned work and progress of the DCVB and MICE suppliers is considerably strengthened by the efforts of Daegu itself.  The city has wholeheartedly embraced renewable energy and sustainable practices.  To better understand what role the city plays, a brief look at the last decade is illustrative.  The city moved to the foreground with the “Green City Gardening Campaign” in the 1990’s.  This policy initiative led to Daegu being dubbed Korea’s first solar city by the International Solar Energy Society (ISES).

Subsequently, the city went on to host the first International Solar Cities Congress, the International Green Energy Congress and the prestigious World Energy Congress.  It has also aggressively implemented bio fuels, hydroelectric power, geothermal heating and fuel cells wherever possible.  It even boasts and astounding 1,600+ busses running on natural gas.   Ongoing and future plans include the Smart Green City project, the LED lighting promotion project and the expansion of fuel cell and photovoltaic industries within the renewable energy cluster.

Moving forward, as Daegu becomes an increasingly sought after host to MICE events, the DCVB, in conjunction with local MICE suppliers, will continue to ramp up efforts to become more environmentally friendly.  Additional support and forward thinking from the city of Daegu will also foster gains.  Sustainability is a top priority for all involved and even better results can be expected in the future.

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