As part of its ongoing sustainability campaign, Messe Frankfurt aims to obtain a certificate for the internationally recognised environmental management system EMAS (Eco-Management and Audit Scheme) by the end of 2023. According to EMAS, this means that Messe Frankfurt will be the first company in the German trade fair sector to introduce this system.
This seal of quality for sustainable environmental management, which was developed by the European Union, is geared towards companies that continually improve their environmental performance on their own initiative. As Wolfgang Marzin, President and Chief Executive Officer of Messe Frankfurt, emphasises: “EMAS is the most rigorous environmental management system in the world and a real driving force for change. With this validation, we are improving our environment performance resolutely on an ongoing basis – and are also documenting this very transparently for our business partners, shareholders and interested members of the public.” Messe Frankfurt will conduct the audit for all companies at its Frankfurt base until the end of the year and will then measure its progress every year from then on. EMAS’s analysis and audit will include not only Messe Frankfurt GmbH, Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH and Messe Frankfurt Venue GmbH but also the two subsidiaries Messe Frankfurt Medien und Service GmbH and Accente Gastronomie Service GmbH.
The strict requirements and regular independent assessments by EMAS extend to almost all areas of the company. The core indicators are the energy, emissions, material, water, waste disposal and land usage/biodiversity sectors. Other indicators such as social responsibility are also evaluated. The entire process and the information included in environmental statements are audited by independent external environmental verifiers. The EMAS assessment system is supervised by the Federal Ministry for the Environment. Sustainability is a central pillar of Messe Frankfurt’s corporate strategy. In past years, the Group has undertaken a series of voluntary commitments relating to sustainability, such as the United Nations Global Compact, the Charter of Diversity and the ‘fairpflichtet’ sustainability code. In 2022, Messe Frankfurt completed an ESG rating (Environmental, Social and Governance) for the first time and was awarded a bronze medal. As well as supporting the sustainability initiatives of sector associations AUMA and UFI, the company has signed the Net Zero Carbon Events Pledge.
New generation committed to transformation process
Messe Frankfurt employees of all ages and disciplines are actively involved in the company’s sustainable transformation process. Trainees and students at Messe Frankfurt are also working extensively on sustainability issues – with very positive results! In 2022, German trade fair and exhibition association FAMA awarded Messe Frankfurt Young Professional Valerie Grimm first prize in its Messe-Impuls-Preis 2022 award for outstanding degree theses. In the bachelor thesis she wrote as part of her studies at DHBW Ravensburg, she examined the sustainability of congresses based on a case study of Messe Frankfurt. She also developed a matrix and an online tool that maps the carbon footprint of congress events specific to each location and makes it possible to plan the individual parameters interactively.