When thousands of attendees and exhibitors come together for meetings and conferences, they produce big ideas and big results. Inevitably, though, these events also produce big amounts of waste. As the convention industry continues to reveal the urgent need to take better care of the environment, meeting planners can play a pivotal role in the process.
At Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, sustainability is a priority. From its architectural design to the technology adopted to reduce its carbon footprint to the efforts it makes to encourage clients to go green, the integrated resort is an advocate for the eco-friendly movement. In 2014, Marina Bay Sands hosted nearly 1.8 million attendees at more than 2,500 events. Here’s a look at how the property ensured those attendees created a positive impact on the environment.
1) Ensuring Energy Efficiency
Marina Bay Sands’ $25 million Intelligent Building Management System has over 90,000 control points that allows automated controls over lighting, heating and water supplies for the entire integrated resort. Between 2012 and 2014, the integrated resort saved a massive 66,150,000 kWh of electricity -- equivalent of the average annual electricity used in more than 14,000 4-room flats in Singapore.
Marina Bay Sands has taken some impressive steps to reduce the property’s electricity usage. This includes removing over 700 light bulbs in heart-of-house and common areas and installing over 12,000 energy-efficient fluorescent and LED lights throughout the property. The building’s facade is also designed to leverage natural daylight to illuminate the interior and eliminate the need for an energy-intensive lighting system.
2) Managing Waste
Every effort is made to minimize waste at Marina Bay Sands. A waste management project that was introduced in 2012 saw the integrated resort recycling an estimated 2,200 tons of waste annually. Approximately 1.5 tons of cooking oil waste generated monthly is collected and converted to biofuel. The property also introduced a linen recycling program that saw Marina Bay Sands increase its average monthly linen recycling to 2 tons.
3) Offering Environmentally Responsible Menus
When attendees eat at Marina Bay Sands, they satisfy more than their appetites; they also be play their part to protect the environment. The integrated resort recently received praise for its decision to remove shark fin from its menu.
“Removing shark fin from the menus across our different business units is a bold testament to our commitment to reducing our environmental impact. Marina Bay Sands is a leader in the hospitality and MICE industry – we have the unique opportunity to inspire and influence our customers and partners to adopt sustainable practices,” Kevin Teng, Director of Sustainability at Marina Bay Sands, said.
“Marina Bay Sands is showing foresight and leadership in corporate sustainability, providing a great example that the longevity and ongoing success of business is closely tied to safeguarding the biodiversity of our planet,” Elaine Tan, CEO, World Wildlife Fund Singapore, said after the announcement.
In addition to the shark-fin-free menu, Marina Bay Sands only sources seafood from suppliers certified either by the Marine Stewardship Council or the Aquaculture Stewardship Council.
Marina Bay Sands’ efforts have been recognized by international bodies such as GMIC/IMEX and industry green meeting standards such as the APEX/ASTM, and it will continue to introduce innovative technologies, such as renewables and improved building management systems. As the single largest building in Singapore to be conferred the prestigious BCA Green Mark Platinum Award, meeting planners who take their groups to Marina Bay Sands can be confident that their events are environmentally responsible without compromising guests’ expectations.
This educational article was brought to you by Marina Bay Sands. For more information on why your colleagues are meeting at Asia’s leading destination for meetings and events, click here.