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A year after they were published by ASTM International, the APEX/ASTM Environmentally Sustainable Event Standards are being turned into a certification for the meetings and events industry, according to the Green Meetings
Industry Council (GMIC), which yesterday announced an agreement with iCompli to develop an APEX-based green meetings certification.
“Certification drives adoption of industry standards,” says Tamara Kennedy, executive director of GMIC, whose members led the development of the APEX/ASTM standards. “We saw a real need in the industry for a certification program that industry participants could achieve and be recognized for their sustainability performance. We wanted an audit partner who not only knew our industry, but was willing to work with us to develop an affordable yet rigorous process. iCompli met those requirements.”
Under the terms of its agreement with GMIC, iCompli — a division of global third-party assurance provider BPA Worldwide — will develop certification protocols for each of the APEX/ASTM standards and all necessary forms and documents to support the certification process. GMIC, meanwhile, will develop a registry of certified organizations and establish a practitioner group of industry experts to clarify certification issues and propose improvements to the standards.
“We are delighted to be working with GMIC to develop a certification program for the ASTM Standards,” says BPA Worldwide President and CEO Glenn Hansen. “Sustainability is a critical issue in the events industry. Adoption of the ASTM Standards — and certification by an independent third party — will advance environmental and social sustainability and raise the level of performance of everyone in the industry.”
The Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX) initiative was launched in 2007 by the Convention Industry Council, which set out to create industry standards for environmentally sustainable events. Officially sanctioned by ASTM International — formerly the American Society for Testing and Materials — the completed standards include nine individual topic areas: Accommodations, Audio/Visual, Communication, Exhibits, Food and Beverage, On-Site Office, Destinations, Meeting Venue and Transportation. The completed standards were published last year as both electronic and paper documents.
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