What is Sustainability?

Sustainability is the principle of ensuring that an action, process or behaviour meets the cultural, social, political and economic needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Within the realm of events, the term Sustainability is commonly used to refer to environmental policies such as recycling schemes, but it can also refer to more social conditions, such as ensuring that your event engages with and showcases young talent; working with and training volunteers to develop the skills of future event organisers; or improving working opportunities within the local community.

It is increasingly important to consider the longer term impact of your event, and awareness of sustainable issues has never been higher. ISAN (The Independent Street Arts Network) recently published (February 2012) a groundbreaking Toolkit for promoting sustainability within the outdoor event sector. You can download this resource; The ISAN Environmental Sustainability Toolkit – Making Outdoor Arts Sustainable- in the left hand panel.

This Environmental Sustainability Toolkit is a starting point for the outdoor arts sector to address its environmental impacts. This section gives you a brief overview of the key considerations, but we highly recommend that you read and consider the ISAN Environmental Sustainability Toolkit, as it is full of useful information and advice with helpful alongside case studies to help inspire you to improve the sustainability of your events.