Denver, Co. (October 16, 2015) – VISIT DENVER has become the first destination marketing organization in the country to achieve a Level 2 green meeting certification from the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). ASTM developed the certification process, which is commonly referred to as the APEX/ASTM Standard, and has become the industry benchmark for rating sustainability in meetings and conventions. These standards provide event planners and suppliers with measurable specifications for producing sustainable events and are independently verified by iCompli, a company that audits compliance to sustainability, technology and service claims.
“It’s an honor to be the first destination marketing organization in the country to earn this level of certification, and it illustrates our continued resolve to be a leader in the green meetings industry,” said Richard Scharf, president and CEO of VISIT DENVER, The Convention and Visitors Bureau. “Denver is already known for its commitment toward the environment and sustainable living, and this achievement not only answers a growing industry demand for green meetings, but it also reflects our company culture and the business culture of our city.”
In 2013, VISIT DENVER became the first convention and visitors bureau to earn the Level 1 distinction. VISIT DENVER’s Level 2 certification was awarded based on continued improvements in key criteria associated with its green meeting offerings including staff management policy, communications, waste management, energy, air quality, water, procurement, and community partners. The achievement also maintains VISIT DENVER’s certification as an official Green Meeting Industry Council Supplier.
“VISIT DENVER’s achievement of Level 2 APEX certification represents Denver’s ongoing commitment to sustainable business practices in our city,” said Jerry Tinianow, Denver’s Chief Sustainability Officer.
Denver already has earned a national reputation as one of the greenest meeting sites in the nation. In 2012, the LEED Gold Certified Colorado Convention Center became the first facility in the country to receive ASTM Level 1 certification in the venues category. Additionally, the center’s audio visual provider, Image Audiovisuals, was the first company to earn certification in the audio visual and production category. Both have since achieved Level 2 honors. Denver’s fourth company to be certified under these standards is Centerplate Catering, the Colorado Convention Center’s resident catering company, which achieved ASTM Level 1 certification in 2014. Denver is the only city to boast certifications in four of the nine certification categories. As a result, Greenbiz.com named Denver the #1 location in America for green meetings in 2014.
Over the last decade, Denver has experienced unprecedented growth as a convention destination with the 5th busiest U.S. airport and expanded international service that includes recently added non-stop flights from Tokyo, Iceland and Mexico. Denver offers 44,000 hotel rooms citywide including 10,000 rooms by the end of next year within walking distance of the Colorado Convention Center, which was ranked among the top five in the country by meeting planners. By early 2016, Denver will offer new direct commuter rail service from downtown’s historic Union Station to Denver International Airport.