What is Net Zero?
Net Zero refers to a balance between man-made greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and their removal from the atmosphere. To achieve this balance, GHG emissions must be reduced and the non-avoided ones must be compensated or “neutralized” through the use of long-term carbon capture solutions.
What is the Difference Between Net Zero and Carbon Neutral?
For carbon neutrality, the non-avoided emissions are compensated through the use of traditional offsets (carbon credits coming from projects that develop renewable energies, efficient transport etc.). Carbon neutrality can be an intermediate step towards net zero.
The Paris Agreement
The Paris Agreement is an international treaty on climate change adopted in 2015 at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris. The Agreement set a long-term temperature goal to keep the rise in mean global temperature to well below 2°C (3.6°F) above pre-industrial levels, and preferably limit the increase to 1.5°C (2.7°F). In order to achieve this there is a recognition that global carbon emissions need to be reduced by 50% by 2030 from a 2018 baseline and for net zero emissions to be achieved by the second half of the century.
Net Zero and the Events Industry
The events industry is a complex network of stakeholders including companies who are directly involved in delivering events, such as venues, event organisers, exhibitors and their suppliers who provide food and beverage, onsite equipment and signage, among other things. In addition, many events include the requirement for visitors and exhibitors to travel to and stay at a location. Addressing the carbon emissions across the whole value chain is complicated and challenging, and many elements of an event (such as transportation and hotel stays) are not directly under the control of those putting on an event. Therefore, quantifying impact and defining responsibilities needs to underpin any ambition for the events industry to become net zero.
In addition, many companies from the event industry have already implemented strong strategies to reduce their carbon emissions and it is clear that the solutions often rely on the reality of each local environment and size of organization. This initiative recognises these challenges and through its collaborative nature will seek to drive alignment across the different players so that a common roadmap can be developed.