Meeting the objectives of a sustainable Conference will require the collective commitment of the Conference secretariat and individual participants to advance the social, economic and environmental sustainability of the Conference.
A number of measures are being implemented to minimize the environmental impacts and to maximize the social, economic and environmental sustainability of the Conference.
The UNISDR is promoting a Paper Smart Conference with a target of reducing paper use at the Conference by at least 50% or more. To do this, the UNISDR is deploying a Conference Box system for electronic delivery of documents, in addition to access of all documents through the Conference website. Sendai City has made iPad tablets available for lending to a limited number of delegates without their own portable tablet computers, on a first come first served basis. In addition, UNISDR is reducing paper use by the interpreters, publication and other document distribution by promoting electronic version use.
While UNISDR is actively reducing its own fossil-fuel consumption by promoting a paper smart conference, we are also encouraging voluntary carbon offsetting to reduce its WCDRR related activity carbon footprint. We will voluntarily purchase carbon offsets to mitigate its own greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, paper use, and other activities related to its activities for the WCDRR.
Sendai City is also proving the free use of Electric-bicycles for WCDRR delegates, and will make a large number of free WIFI hotspots over Sendai City during the Conference, to ensure easy access to electronic documents of the Conference. In addition, Sendai City will also be promoting waste segregation during WCDRR
Once the Conference secretariat have done all they can to plan a sustainable event, it will be the turn of delegates to ensure the event meets its social, economic and environmental objectives. To this end a guidance note have been prepared advising delegates on matters such as transportation – including information about shuttle buses to help delegates get around – accommodation, dining and reducing the use of paper and other resources such as water and energy. To ensure the conference has a positive impact on the local economy delegates are also invited to make use of local businesses and to shop for local products.
A largely unavoidable source of emissions will be those generated by participants travelling to Sendai. Here delegates are urged to quantify their emissions and, where possible, offset them by financing local sustainable development projects, including afforestation and reforestation projects.