Exhibition World Issue 5 – 2021 - Page 11

UFI Comment

Ready for Rotterdam with a big pledge

s the summer is drawing to a close here in Europe , the UFI team is back at full strength – and also increasingly back in our office in Paris . It ’ s been an unusually wet summer across Central Europe – not the only part of the world that encounters changing weather . Be it forest fires and heatwaves , Hurricane Ida slamming New Orleans and New York in the US , floods washing away whole parts of cities in Germany – humans have already warmed up the planet by roughly 1.1 degrees Celsius , or two degrees Fahrenheit , since the 19th century , and we ’ re now faced with changing climate . The latest IPCC report ( you can link to it via https :// www . ipcc . ch / report / ar6 / wg1 /) paints a scary picture .
Starting at the end of October , the COP26 Climate Conference in Glasgow SEC will track the progress countries and industries around the world are making towards the reduction of greenhouse gases ( GHG ). By then , our industry , the global events industry , plans to have a ‘ Net Zero Carbon Events ’ pledge ready for launch .
Together with our partner associations ICCA and AIPC , it is a
Kai Hattendorf UFI managing director / CEO
project that UFI has been involved in from the inception , liaising with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change UNFCCC , and providing the project secretariat for the initial pre-project phase . Going forward , the initiative will be hosted by the Joint Meetings Industry Council ( JMIC ) as our industry ’ s global umbrella body .
This month , the draft pledge is being shared for comment with all interested parties from the whole events industry – an inclusive and open process to comply with the expectations from the UN . All comments will then be reviewed for the final version of the pledge . Please
go to https :// netzerocarbonevents . org for more information – and please sign your company up as supporter . We reached 100 companies and institutions from all around the world joining this initiative on 23 September and the number continues to grow every day ..
Our exhibition industry has already done a lot around sustainability over recent years and our latest UFI report , released this summer ( available at : https :// www . ufi . org / archive-research / status-of-sustainability-in-theexhibition-industry-july-2021 /) shows that . Now we can align as the whole events industry with one joint pledge and approach . It will elevate our industry a lot on the global advocacy level . It will help us all to combat global warming .
Of course , this will still very much be a hot topic as well in a few weeks time , when I will , hopefully , meet many of you again in person at our UFI Global Congress in Rotterdam – 3-6 November . It is extremely timely that the Dutch government has lifted most of their travel restrictions and now everyone who is fully vaccinated can travel to the Netherlands without facing quarantine on site . You will find the details about that and much more on the Congress website at www . uficongress . org .
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