A country’s laws, from Federal through to state/territorial/departmental and local government by-laws, may regulate the way an event interacts with the environment and the community. These may include current and emerging laws and regulation.
Accepted best practice in the event industry or in the community where the event is held, may mean moving beyond compliance with existing regulations. Sometimes an event may operate within the law as they address core sustainability issues, however it may be evident that some issues are not adequately enforced or covered in sufficient detail.
Government authorities who regulates activities of the community to protect the environment including land, air, water, flora and fauna. This can be through temporary or permanent disruption to biodiversity through to emissions control (solid and liquid waste, noise, lighting, pollution and particulates).
Environment agencies can regulate such things at events as waste handling procedures onsite, waste water disposal, sewage handling, congestion causing localized pollution, noise pollution, lighting pollution, protection of sensitive areas of land and water, particularly regulating distance from waterways that activities can be carried out.
Local government are often the regulating authority which issues and event license. For building-bound events, this invariably centres on capacity of the building, and safe egress in case of an emergency. The local government will regulate also road closures, security personnel numbers, requirements for traffic plans, foot traffic and crowd congestion plans, safety plans, and everything else that goes into an Event Management Plan.
From an environmental point of view, Local Government can impinge on or enforce excellence in waste handing operations. They can be the source of either great support if they have a dedicated and motivated environment/waste education team, or they can be a barrier if your event has grand plans on waste management including composting and they either prevent it from happening through lack of foresight.
What environmental regulations apply to event management?
- Environment Agencies
- Local Government
- Industry accepted practice
- Corporate/Company requirements
Greenhouse Gas Emissions – are currently not regulated within the event industry. They do not need to be minimised by law and they do not need to be reported on. The same for all physical impacts – waste, water, transport, procurement etc.
However how you manage waste, water and traffic impacts may very well be regulated as described below, it is just that the actual results – how much waste you produced, how much water you used and much CO2 you produced through transport and energy – do not need to be reported.
- Riparian Zone, protecting the transition zone between land and water.
- Local wildlife, noise and light restrictions to not upset local fauna.
- Traffic, preventing congestion and undue idling of vehicles to reduce local pollution levels.
- Composting, laws regarding composting waste at the event site.
- Occupational Health & Safety
- Noise, light and trading hours regulation
- Use of waterways
- Traffic and congestion regulation
- Environment Protection Agency regulations
- Disability, accessibility and anti-discrimination regulation
- Liquor licensing
- Fire, Safety and Policing regulations (include drug control)
- Privacy of personal information (including that supplied electronically)
- Agreements with public authorities
- Agreements with customers
- Non-regulatory guidelines
- Voluntary principles or codes of practice
- Voluntary eco-labelling certification
- Trade association requirements
- Public commitments of the organisation or parent org
- International conventions, treaties & accords