Climate change has and will continue to have an adverse impact on the lives of children, young people and disadvantaged communities. Making the conference as environmentally friendly as possible and lowering its environmental impact is really important to us, and we’ve been giving a lot of thought to what targeted sustainability actions we can take.
We are aware that international non-digital conferences have a large carbon footprint. People travel in from across the world to use an enormous amount of additional resources, specifically produced to be consumed within a span of a few days, and creating great amounts of waste which often ends up in landfill.
Because of this, and in light of the ongoing Coronavirus situation, we have decided to take a mixed hybrid-approach to our conference in 2022. The first day (Wednesday 30 March 2022) will be accessible in two ways: (a) in person in Blackpool or (b) via a live video feed. The second day (Thursday 31 March 2022) will be entirely online. We hope that this will cut back on carbon produced by long-distance travel, and make our conference available to those not able to choose sustainable transport options.
We have also made some key eco-conscious commitments to lower the carbon footprint of the physical event, whilst also supporting the local economy and community. This is an ongoing process, and some of the resilient moves we are making so far include the following:
- We are re-thinking the supply-chain, to source produce and products locally whenever possible.
- We are in conversation with the conference centre to eliminate single-use plastics and recycle as much as is possible within the local waste management infrastructure.
- We are working with a homeless shelter near to the conference centre to ensure that any surplus food goes to support local people.
- We have teamed up with our local community farm which will use all carbon-offsetting donations received to establish an orchard.
- We are working towards making the conference paper-free and will offer digital programmes instead.
Young People have made these statements on behalf of the conference organisers:
“We would like the conference to be sustainable and as environmentally friendly as possible as we want to set an example to show how we, in Blackpool, along with others can help improve our planet, one event at a time.”
“We would like the conference to be sustainable and as environmentally friendly as possible, to show how passionate we are to make a positive change to our environment.”
“We would like the conference to be sustainable and as environmentally friendly as possible because if we do not save the planet, the planet will not save us.”