Here are a few suggestions to reduce your carbon footprint at your next event:
Buses & Carpooling
Not only is it more sustainable to bus or carpool as opposed to driving alone, it's cheaper and more social! Having your guests load onto a chartered bus to your venue is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and keep the socializing going from a meeting to dinner or ceremony to reception.
All in One Venue
If you can avoid having your guests travel to multiple locations, that's your best option for a green event. Bonus points if your venue is close to the airport or highway most of your guests came from. If you're planning a conference long-distance you need to pay attention to the difference in a convention centre vs. a conference centre. A conference centre has hotel rooms attached whereas a convention centre does not. If you can find a hotel or conference centre for your event that is ideal as it will mean less travel for your attendees and who doesn't love convenience! If you're planning a wedding, many venues offer options for the ceremony and reception to occur on the same property and your guests love it. As late receptions have become more popular and many brides and grooms have begun to opt for "first look" photography, this is the most stress-free and eco-friendly way to host your wedding.
I've been to a few events now that have actually required the mass transportation to be completely turned off until the entire bus is loaded to reduce idling and pollution. This is a great way to visibly show your attendees that you're making an effort to be more eco-friendly with your event.
While at a conference a number of guests walked from sessions and dinners together instead of taking the subway, bus, or taxis. This was great because it felt safer for all of us to walk together and it influenced others to join. While planning your event, consider having staff members guide groups or create easy to follow maps for guests to feel comfortable walking from one location to another.
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." --Margaret Mead
Best of luck with your transportation planning!