Events in New Zealand promise a big impact â but not on the environment
New Zealand is home to some of the most stunning landscapes in the world. Combined with its welcoming hospitality and new venue infrastructure, it is becoming an increasingly attractive destination for international business events. As such, it is taking steps to ensure its event programmes have maximum impact – but not on the environment.
Leading organisations including Tourism New Zealand and the Department of Conservation have joined together to create the Tiaki Promise. Tiaki means to care for people and place in Te Reo MÄori. Visiting delegates are encouraged to follow its guiding principles. These include: Caring for land, sea and nature; travelling safely, and respecting culture.
Tourism New Zealandâs Global Manager Business Events, Anna Fennessy, says: âIn New Zealand, we feel a duty of care to protect the country we love. We know our international delegates will love it, too, and encourage them to be guardians of our country as they travel here.â
This special connection to the land has ensured New Zealand is a hub of knowledge in primary industry and earth sciences. New Zealandâs clean, green ethos drives sustainable production and innovation across its world-leading agriculture, aquaculture and forestry industries. A pride in understanding the land, harnessing its energy, and caring for its natural resources results in expertise ranging from renewable energy sources to environmental research.
These skill sets provide an added boost for conference content, with New Zealand able to deliver speakers, knowledge, and research in these sectors.
On an operational level, New Zealandâs business events providers are leading by example in efforts to improve sustainability.
The New Zealand International Convention Centre (NZICC) in Auckland will operate as a carbon neutral venue when it opens in 2020. An internal carbon levy on all emissions will be used to both offset the NZICCâs carbon footprint and invest in further emission-reducing projects. The NZICC will be part of the wider, carbon-neutral SkyCity entertainment precinct, which includes three hotels, restaurants, the Skytower, and the soon-to-be-opened Weta Workshop, and All Blacks Experience.
Convention centre Te Pae Christchurch, also opening in 2020, is being built to New Zealand Green Building Council (NZGBC) Green 5-Star Rating.
Meanwhile, flagship airline Air New Zealand is committed to targets including carbon neutral growth from 2020, and a reduction of 50% in net emissions by 2050 compared to 2005 levels.
Incentive activities not only make the most of New Zealandâs stunning scenery, but increasingly allow visiting delegates to âgive backâ to nature. Nomad Safaris, a 4WD experience through Queenstownâs breathtaking Southern Lakes region, runs CSR activities where delegates cull the wilding pines that can negatively impact native plants and animals.
Camp Glenorchy, in the heart of the South Islandâs soaring mountains, is New Zealandâs first Net Zero Energy accommodations.
Rotorua Canopy Tours runs a pest-trapping programme in the beautiful native forest it operates in which has helped restore native bird and lizard populations.