Conference Sustainability

AASHE is committed to modeling sustainability in all of our activities, including the conference. We implement a variety of practices to neutralize or minimize the conference’s environmental footprint and maximize our positive impact or “handprint”.

Air & Climate

To help address the carbon emissions associated with the conference:

  • AASHE seeks a partner to support the retiring of carbon to offset the estimated emissions associated with travel to and from the conference as well as on site energy use. 


To help create a sustainable economy:

  • AASHE selects Sustainability Award winner plaques made with sustainable materials. 
  • Volunteer T-shirts are made with sustainable materials.
  • Badge holders are made with recycled content and name badges are printed on recycled content paper.


To help preserve and restore water:

  • AASHE seeks a partner to support with the purchase of Water Restoration Certificates to cover the estimated water usage of conference attendees over the course of the conference. 
  • AASHE seeks a partner to provide reusable cups to encourage attendees to be environmentally friendly. These bottles help prevent waste from disposal of single-use cups. 

Food & Dining

To support the creation of ecologically sound, fair, humane and resilient food systems and promote healthy, plant-based diets:

  • We will not be serving any meat on Monday, consistent with the Meatless Mondays campaign.
  • All meals will include substantive and clearly labeled vegan and vegetarian options.
  • We are working with Centerplate, the Baltimore Convention Center’s in-house catering company, to use environmentally and socially preferable food products (i.e., those that are Certified Organic, Fair Trade Certified, Certified Humane or sourced from local, community-based producers) to the greatest extent practical.


To facilitate and encourage the use of more sustainable transportation options:

  • San Antonio is easy to get around with use of its public transportation.
  • All conference hotels are selected in close proximity to where the conference will be held.


To minimize resource use and waste generated by the conference:

  • No printed program will be available. Instead, we encourage attendees to download the conference mobile app, available Fall 2017, to access program content and other pertinent details of the conference including schedules, session descriptions and maps.
  • Conference meals will be served buffet style with reusable plates and utensils. 
  • Leftover food will be donated. 
  • All materials produced for the meeting (such as banners, posters, signs, place cards) are designed for reuse at future conferences and are recycled at the end of their usable life.
  • Presenters have been asked to minimize physical handouts.
  • Max-R, this year’s waste diversion sponsor, is providing customized, easy to use waste and recycle bins of 97% HDPE.

Partner Selection

Many different entities are involved in putting together a conference. We strive to work with partners that share our commitment to sustainability.

  • Stetson Convention Services, our show decorator, works to minimize on-site material waste and uses a variety of recycled-content and biodegradable materials. Learn more

How You Can Help

All attendees have a role to play in improving the sustainability of the conference. You can help by:

  • Take advantage of public transportation options while in San Antonio.
  • If you choose to print the schedule of sessions or other materials, print double-sided on 100% post consumer recycled, agricultural residue and/or FSC certified content paper.
  • Bring and use your own water bottle.
  • Place any the materials you wish to discard in the appropriate collection receptacle.
  • Return name badges to the registration desk after the conference so we can reuse the plastic holders at future events.


Thank You to Our 2017 Sponsors