TEDxTampaBay is Greening its Event

It is no coincidence that TEDxTampaBay 2011 is happening on April 22, 2011, which is Earth Day. Earth Day is an incredible day to celebrate a TEDx event, and the TEDxTampaBay team worked all year to make the event special.  Not only have we curated a widely diverse audience and presenter line-up, we’ve also worked a bit harder to reduce the carbon footprint of our event.

Our key consultant, Jason Green, sustainability coordinator for St. Petersburg College, provided sustainability recommendations and guidance on all aspects of our event.  For example, Jason helped us calculate our event’s carbon footprint and recommended avenues for offsetting it completely! Here are some of the cool things we’ve incorporated into our event as a result.

Lone footprint in the sand on Folly Beach, South Carolina

Food

Our event caterers, Parkshore Grill, sources its meats and produce from sustainable, organic, and locally produced farms as much as possible.  Even the lunch boxes were selected with sustainability in mind.  We’re also providing pitchers of water instead of bottled water during breaks.

Carbon Offsets

With some of the proceeds from ticket sales from the event, TEDxTampaBay is going to purchase carbon offsets to zero out our entire event’s estimated footprint.  Our total estimated carbon footprint is roughly 15,000 lbs CO2.

Want to help us offset it?  According to Jason, if we take 1.12 cars off the roads or plant 163 trees, we’ll completely offset our event’s carbon.  Although we’re purchasing our offset, it’s great to know that by carpooling and planting a tree, we’re making a difference.

By the way, using our social media network, we were able to connect two TEDxTampaBay attendees with a person willing to share a ride to the event.  So, we’ve already met our carbon footprint offset goals by taking two cars off the road for our event.  Want to offset it even more?  We encourage ticket holders to bike, walk, or carpool to our event!

Printing

Our print sponsor, Direct Marketing Concierge, uses digital printing technology and paper sourced only from sustainable forests.  Furthermore, we’ve designed our print materials to minimize the paper required.  We created generic logo banners, too, which we can reuse every year!

Art

Taylor Pilote, an MFA candidate at the University of South Florida, will be exhibiting some of his sculptures.  His work blends strong environmental statements with Daliesque flair. We hope to feature some of Taylor’s art on the TEDxTampaBay stage, so if you’re not attending the event, tune into the live stream for a peek at his work.

If you’re doing something cool to offset our event footprint (like planting trees, carpooling, biking, eating organic, etc.), please share pics, video, etc. on our Facebook Fan page! It would be awesome to calculate how much carbon offset we’ve generated collectively!

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About ginac
Renaissance leaner

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