Skip to main content
Photo: Visit Stockholm

Plan a planet-friendly meeting or event in Stockholm

Plan a planet-friendly meeting or event in Stockholm

We can all safely agree that sustainability is not a passing trend. People take the climate crisis seriously with over 80 percent believing sustainability is important when making purchasing decisions. In light of this, why should a meeting or event conflict with their efforts to minimize their environmental impact?

In Stockholm, sustainability has been high up on the agenda for over half a century. We hosted the 1972 United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, beginning a new era of global cooperation on environmental issues.

Stockholm was the first-ever city to be designated European Green Capital by the EU Commission in 2010. This was before sustainability became a major selling point for cities trying to attract visitors, conferences and events.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is a global initiative, but it’s at the local level that large parts of the work on the objectives are put into practice.

Read more about sustainability in Stockholm and the city's sustainability work in various areas:

Overall goals for the City of Stockholm

Gender equality, reduced inequality, and sustainable cities and communities are given an overarching perspective by the City of Stockholm and are therefore of great importance to all activities – including the destination.

Operational goals for the destination

The Sustainable Development Goals that the destination is best able to contribute to through its activities are goals 8, 9, 12, 13, and 17. Several of the indicators set for the goals are directly linked with the day-to-day processes and fall within the mandate wherein the destination management organization drives change.

Secondary goals that we contribute to indirectly

We can help further the transition towards more sustainable development by educating, communicating, and setting a good example for businesses and stakeholders involved with Stockholm as a destination for visitors. We thereby contribute directly to objective 4 and indirectly to objectives 2, 7, 14, 15, and thus also 3.

A sustainability hotspot

Our focus on sustainability has only sharpened, and today our city is one of the world’s top destinations for sustainable events and meetings. But what does it mean for these gatherings to be “sustainable” and what positive difference does it really make?

According to the United Nations, a sustainable event is one that is “designed, organized and implemented in a way that minimizes potential negative impacts and leaves a beneficial legacy for the host community and all involved”.

Pulling this off means taking the footprint of every part of the planning into account. It demonstrates your concern for the planet and proves that you will go the extra mile in your sustainability efforts. Not only is an event or meeting like this better for the environment but it inspires greater climate awareness among attendees. Not to mention, it positively positions your organization and generates both great publicity and feedback.

Eco-friendly from touchdown to take off

A trip to Stockholm starts and ends on a climate-friendly footing. Stockholm Arlanda Airport is the first airport in the world to become carbon neutral in its own operations. The trade organization Airports Council International (ACI) Europe named Stockholm Arlanda Airport Eco-Innovation Airport of the Year 2021. The long-term goal is for Sweden’s domestic air travel to be fossil-free by 2030 and all Swedish air travel to be fossil-free by 2045.

Once in the city, attendees can use our extensive and environmentally-friendly local transport system to get around. Stockholm’s metro (the tunnelbana) features more than 100 km of track and 100 stations. The metro, trains and buses in the city have been using 100 percent renewable energy since 2017 - an achievement that is the result of a journey towards fossil-free, low-carbon public transport that began in the 1980s.

An ever-growing number of hotels in Stockholm are accredited by a third party certifying body for meeting certain sustainability standards. This is a badge of honor for hotels that have made concerted efforts to reduce their environmental impact through, for example, reducing waste, saving energy, and other green practices. Many of our venues are also accredited so it’s no problem to find an eco-friendly space to host an event or meeting.

The cherry on top is our culinary industry’s world-famous commitment to sustainable sustenance. Many chefs in our city are hailed as sustainability pioneers, opting to use organic, seasonal and locally-grown produce in their eateries. Some are also leading the way in the zero-waste movement, finding innovative new ways to recycle and reduce waste.

  • Stockholm’s hotels are world leading when it comes to environmental thinking.
  • Almost all hotels in Stockholm are sustainability accredited by third-party certifying bodies.
  • Conference venues in Stockholm keep sustainability in focus throughout every part of their operations and most of them are accredited by third party certifying bodies.
  • The largest meeting venues are only 10 minutes away by public transport from the very city center.
  • Stockholmsmässan, holds an ISO 20121 certificate for Sustainable Events and is also the first venue in the Nordic region to join the Net Zero Carbon Events-initiative.
  • Stockholm Waterfront, certified by the Green Key, a leading environmental certification body, designed specifically for the hotel and meetings industries.
  • Kistamässan, an environmentally approved venue – has a number of solutions for saving energy (such as fast-closing doors in the exhibition hall, energy saving lamps and reduced lighting during setup and breakdown).
  • The Brewery, certified by the Nordic Swan Ecolabel. Sustainable thinking is an important factor to their operation at large.
  • Most restaurants in Stockholm strive to operate sustainably and many of the city’s chefs are particularly skilled in this area and put a lot focus on locally produced, organic ingredients, waste reduction and recycling.
  • Tap water in Stockholm is among the cleanest (and tastiest) in the world. No need to buy bottled water.

A few examples of great initiatives

Giving young people a chance for a first job in the hospitality industry

Social sustainability and competence are important issues for the hospitality industry. Summer jobs and part-time work give young people an opportunity to gain work experience and references. At the same time, the actors in the hospitality industry get a pair of extra hands and the opportunity to show their activities to the young.

The Royal Djurgården

The Royal Djurgården Society brings together 59 attractions which work for the long-term sustainable development of Djurgården. All of their work is also consistent with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Gröna Lund Culinary School

The culinary school is part of Gröna Lund’s diversity projects for newly arrived Swedes and people who are outside of the labor market with the Swedish Public Employment Service. After the education is complete, the students are offered employment at one of Gröna Lund's restaurants during the summer.

Sustainable Meet Stockholm

A collaborative marketing project within sustainable small and medium meetings and events. A private initiative with partners from the Stockholm travel industry including hotels, key meeting and event venues, attractions and incoming operators – in close cooperation with the City of Stockholm. Sustainable meet Stockholm

The label Kranmärkt

‘Kranmärkt’ is our ‘Eco-tap’ label, our sustainability label for businesses and organizations that choose tap water over bottled water.

Sweden and Stockholm are highly ranked

Global Destination Sustainability Index

Stockholm ranks within the top 10 on the Global Destination Sustainability Index in 2023. More information, GDS Movement

Stockholm - a leader in urban sustainability

As the highest-performing city in the 2023 Sustainable Cities Index Universe, Stockholm is a leader in urban sustainability. Read more.

Sweden ranked best country in the world for sustainable tourism

When global market research company Euromonitor International compared the sustainability of 99 countries, "Top countries for Sustainable Tourism" (Euromonitor International, March 2021).

Europe Sustainable Development Report

Sweden ranked second in the Europe Sustainable Development Report in 2023/24. Access the full report here.

Guide to Sustainable Events

Choose Stockholm for your next sustainable event to choose a destination that shares your high standards and exemplifies the values of your attendees. You can discover more about planning sustainable events in Stockholm in the “Guide to Sustainable Events”. The guide is based on the ISO 20121 standard “Event sustainability management systems” and focused on the ecological/environmental, economic and social aspects of sustainability.

Prefer to speak to someone in person?

Contact us today and one of our experts will help you to start planning.
Contact usContact usContact us

Related content

Related content

    Tram at DjurgårdsbronPhoto: Felix Odell
    Accessibility is on the agenda in Stockholm
    From the moment the plane touches down, navigating your way around is hassle-free.
    The Nobel prize banquet in the City HallPhoto: © Nobel Media AB/Photo/Helena Paulin-Strömberg
    The legacy of Nobel: a meeting destination like no other
    If you’re looking to plan a meeting in a city with a uniquely inspiring atmosphere, look no further than Stockholm.
    Stockholm Royal SeaportPhoto: Felix Odell
    A meeting destination that exceeds expectations
    Stockholm isn’t just a great place to host a meeting, it’s a great place to host a meeting that leaves a lasting impression.