[OSGeo-Conf] Awake some awareness on leaving waste and raise our CO2 footprint after F4G events

Till Adams till.adams at fossgis.de
Tue Jul 25 09:15:00 PDT 2017

Hi Michael, @ConfCOmm,

many thanks for the many contributions! Didn't expect that much response
in such a short time ;-).

I've drafted a first text about this in the FOss4G Handbook here:


Feel free to change/add/comment!


Am 25.07.2017 um 13:50 schrieb Michael Terner:
> Just some quick comments from the Boston team. I think it is fair to
> say that we have an environmental awareness and are doing what we can.
> Some things we can control, other things are controlled by the venue.
> But here is some of what we're looking at (and we do support guidance
> to future LOCs):
>   * We are going +/- "paperless" for our program. Our web/phone app is
>     already downloadable from the website.
>   * Our gala will be using single-use but compostable place
>     settings/utensils (our Aquarium, the gala site, is extremely
>     eco-aware and eco-friendly)
>   * Massachusetts has a strong "bottle bill" and all drink
>     cans/bottles will be recycled as there is a $.05 return to be
>     collected
>   * We are in the process of finalizing a simple, practical,
>     affordable attendee gifts including a reusable water bottle (loved
>     the twitter chatter on the success of the GeoCat water bottle) and
>     and a simple, reusable shopping bag; both of which can be used
>     both at the conference and after
>   * Jeroen's point is the most complicated. It is totally fair to
>     observe that a summer conference interferes with the European
>     vacation norm. But September interferes with the start of the
>     North American academic year and it is difficult to travel during
>     the start of the school year. And, September costs are
>     significantly higher than in the summer in North America. There is
>     no perfect time, and there will always be difficulties for some in
>     making it to FOSS4G. I think it will be tricky to "bake in" that
>     FOSS4G adapts to one particular community's schedule over others'.
>     In other words, my perspective is that it should remain up to
>     Conference Dev to choose the best proposal that balances timing
>     and costs and the creativity of the LOC. Would it be terrible if
>     some of the conferences are in Aug, and others in Sept, or Oct? By
>     moving around within a window then each community has some
>     conferences in the rotation that may be easier, or harder to attend.
> We are looking forward to seeing many of you in Boston; and also to
> seeing the new Call for Proposals for Europe 2019.
> MT
> On Tue, Jul 25, 2017 at 6:16 AM, Till Adams <till.adams at fossgis.de
> <mailto:till.adams at fossgis.de>> wrote:
>     +1
>     I can start woth this these days if okay.
>     (I already know of two teams, that are more or less waiting for
>     the call)
>     Till
>     Am 24.07.2017 um 22:05 schrieb Steven Feldman:
>>     We have to start preparing the call for 2019 soon. 
>>     Let’s update the RfP doc to include an environmental section. I
>>     expect there are several changes that will need to be made,
>>     perhaps a separate thread on the mailing list to gather suggestions
>>     ______
>>     Steven
>>>     On 24 Jul 2017, at 14:09, Till Adams <till.adams at fossgis.de
>>>     <mailto:till.adams at fossgis.de>> wrote:
>>>     Dear ConfComm!
>>>     There is one issue I'd like to mention and perhaps this is also
>>>     a topic
>>>     on that we, as a responsible community, should adress to.
>>>     Recently I've been to FOSS4G Europe in Paris and I recognized,
>>>     that a
>>>     lot of one-way cups and non-returnable bottles were offered during
>>>     breaks. Thinking back to F4G Europe in Como in 2015 there was even
>>>     single-use tableware offered for lunch.
>>>     To make that clear: My goal is not to ask the organizers of the
>>>     named
>>>     conferences for justification !!! Both conferences have been
>>>     phantastic
>>>     events!
>>>     I'd like more to awake our environmental awareness somehow:
>>>     We also had this issue on a FOSSGIS few years ago; a lot of
>>>     single-use
>>>     stuff was used for break-caterings. Since this conference, we ask
>>>     organizers to only offer recycable tableware and bottles on
>>>     FOSSGIS-conferences.
>>>     When on the one side one of the goals of our community is to
>>>     contribute
>>>     to a better world, it makes not much sense, when we leave amounts of
>>>     waste behind us and have a raising CO2-footprint after every of
>>>     our events.
>>>     For Bonn we decided not to offer any non-recycable stuff, we
>>>     also asked
>>>     attendees to balance their CO2-emmission because of flights on a
>>>     voluntary base (eg. atmosfair). To be honest, I don't know if
>>>     anybody
>>>     did, but at least we tried.
>>>     Maybe that's because I am german and although we sell fraudulent
>>>     diesel-cars, we have a favour for recycable bottles, cans and
>>>     everything
>>>     (even French winemakers put a green dot on their bottles, to
>>>     indicate,
>>>     that they are recycable in Germany ;-)) and I also know, that it is
>>>     often not that easy to have this offer in other countries as
>>>     well - but:
>>>     How about adding a topic "Environmental Responsibility" to our
>>>     "Conference Manual" and encourage future LOC's to have an
>>>     enhanced eye
>>>     on these kind of topics? We also might request that future bids
>>>     include
>>>     an abstract on how to handle this issue based on the local
>>>     possibilities. It's up to every ConfComm-member, how to include that
>>>     into his/her voting.
>>>     Till
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> -- 
> *Michael Terner*
> /Executive Vice President/
> 617-447-2468 Direct | 617-447-2400 Main
> Applied Geographics, Inc.
> 24 School Street, Suite 500
> Boston, MA 02108
> www.AppGeo.com <http://www.AppGeo.com>
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