The new digital event carbon calculator created by MeetGreen and Clear Current Consulting can calculate an estimate of your digital event’s carbon footprint in 5 minutes.
The carbon calculator tool forces planners to take a long, hard look at the carbon emissions of their live vs. digital events—and the results are staggering. According to the creators, a 6-hour online event for 4,000 people generates roughly the same carbon impact as a return flight for one person across the Atlantic.
The calculator breaks down 5 types of formats:
- Single Event Site: 1,000 members travel across the country to one host city for a traditional three-day convention. No virtual option is provided.
- Hub and Spoke: The single event site broadcasts out to an additional 1,000 participants who may enjoy the event from home, or in a local venue with others.
- Regional Clusters: There is no central event location. State or provincial chapters gather in a nearby city and are connected to other chapters online. There is some air travel associated with this scenario.
- Local Clusters: As with Regional Clusters, there is no primary event site. Members gather together at a local venue in multiple cities and are connected to each other online. There is no air travel in this scenario.
- Remote-Only: All participants, including the moderator, speakers and sponsors, join from home..
The potential emissions impact of each format includes participant travel to/from the event, streaming by remote viewers, energy used at the venue and accommodations, catering waste, meals at the venue, shuttles, freight and consumables, such as paper.
The calculator has found that remote formats offer a 98 percent reduction in emissions compared to the highest impact Hub and Spoke model. Local and Regional Cluster formats project 75 percent and 60 percent emissions savings, respectively.