Sustainable living

Sustainability is the star at City events

We're minimising environmental impact and maximising enjoyment for audiences.

New Year's Eve friends

More water bubblers, compostable food bins and fewer single-use plastic containers are just some of the changes at City of Sydney events this summer.

We’ve pledged to phase out single-use items at all our events. You’ll no longer see plastic water bottles, straws and utensils, flyers, plastic samples and giveaways or polystyrene food containers.

Instead, you can take advantage of water refilling stations and reusable cups, and find more recycling and composting options. Organisers will be encouraged to use measures such as electronic messaging boards.

To reach our goal of zero waste, we’ll follow 4 principles: reduce/avoid, reuse, recycle and recover. Contractors must commit to phasing out single-use items, reducing food waste and recycling.

Tanya Goldberg, head of audience for major events and festivals, said the City is taking a staged approach.

“Our focus this year is on vending, waste and messaging,” she said.

Tanya said the initial response to our guidelines indicates contractors and attendees will eagerly support the changes.

“At last year’s New Year’s Eve event, a major contractor stopped handing out single-use plastic water bottles to its workers.

“That move alone saved 4000 plastic bottles from going into the system.

We recently hosted an event at Town Hall for 366 people which produced zero waste.

"This was thanks to the use of compostable products and OzHarvest’s sustainable-catering approach. So it can be done," Tanya said.

Mary Watt, manager environmental projects, said engaging with attendees about sustainability will dramatically reduce waste.

“A bit of planning allows us to remove single-use items and provide composting options, but if it’s done correctly the general public should hardly notice anything,” she said.

Do your part and arrive at venues by foot, bicycle or public transport, bring your own water bottle and coffee cup, and leave no waste behind.

Visit What’s On for this summer's events.

Published 9 December 2019