Sustainability is on everyone’s lips – but how exactly does it work? And how can it really succeed? Leipzig does not have a panacea for the problems, and yet it is worth taking a careful look at the Saxon conference destination. An exciting variety of ideas reflects Leipzig’s awareness of personal and social responsibility.
Growing into a smart city
Development concepts for making cities more sustainable, efficient, technologically advanced, future-proof and socially inclusive are also the focus of Triangulum, the EU’s smart cities project in which Leipzig has been involved since 2020. The topic is also receiving new attention with the creation of the city administration’s new Department for Sustainable Development and Climate Protection in the summer of 2021. This is where the city will manage sustainability and climate processes in the future, and where citizens will be able to participate more in energy and climate protection activities.
This institutional commitment goes hand in hand with many civil society initiatives such as the Forum Nachhaltiges Leipzig (Sustainable Leipzig Forum), which promotes sustainable growth.
Urban life of tomorrow
An integrated urban development concept was first adopted by the city council in 2009, and the plans were continuously evaluated since then, before being relaunched in 2018 as a “strategic vision” for the Leipzig of 2030 – with the focus squarely on sustainable growth.
It aims to find answers to many of the big questions, such as global conditions, demographic change, the consequences of structural change and the challenges of the knowledge society. Accordingly, the goals it has set are ambitious – from education and social integration to smart, sustainable mobility and climate protection. And because all these questions aren’t the problem of the city administration alone, a variety of players from across city life are involved in implementing the plans.
Organising sustainable events – today!
An attentive eye for sustainable events stems from Leipzig’s status as a modern trade fair and congress city. In August 2020, for example, the city unveiled its own guide to organising sustainable events. Similar to a checklist, it contains clear and measurable recommendations for action in areas such as mobility, the careful use of resources, regional and fair trade, and social responsibility.
Recent examples show what sustainable collaboration for events can look like in practice: the city is already in close dialogue with organisers of the International Broadcast Centre at Leipziger Messe for UEFA EURO 2024 and the International German Gymnastics Festival 2025.
A conference location with team spirit
The initiative “Feel the Spirit... do-it-at-leipzig.de”, which brings together some 50 partners to promote the city as a conference destination, is equally focused on sustainable cooperation.
The team spirit and ongoing cooperation between congress and event venues, conference hotels, service agencies, local PCOs and logistics partners benefits you as an event organiser right from the planning stage, and later when you organise and conduct your events in Leipzig.
The service portal at www.do-it-at-leipzig.de brings all of these providers together, introducing the services they offer the congress and conference sector and making it easier to find the right solution for you. In addition, the initiative, together with its partners, regularly gets people talking about Leipzig by organising original appearances at major industry events such as IMEX.
Fairground with Green Globe standards
Talking of sustainability in the event industry: in 2009, Leipziger Messe became the first German trade fair company to be certified according to Green Globe standards. Since then, it has always passed the annual sustainability audit with flying colours.
The measures introduced at the exhibition grounds, the Congress Center Leipzig (CCL) and the KONGRESSHALLE am Zoo Leipzig cover the careful use of resources, energy saving and social aspects. Sustainability is understood as an integral part of corporate social responsibility and as a wise investment.
Innovations for sustainable mobility
Beacons like Leipzig’s transport authority LVB shine far beyond Leipzig with their innovative approach to tackling mobility issues.
From ABSOLUT – a project involving self-driving public transport vehicles – to LOW CARB’s efforts to reduce CO2 emissions, and from the app-based on-demand mobility service Flexa to the company’s social commitment, which was recognised in 2021 with the Tolerance Prize awarded by the Saxon State Ministry for Social Affairs, LVB is blazing sustainable new trails for public transport.
And there are many more ways in which the city of Leipzig is an impressive example of sustainable mobility in action.
How to realize sustainable events:
Sustainable conference and congress facilities
The commitment of the do-it-at-leipzig.de partners to sustainable development is almost limitless. It ranges from resource-saving stadium seating at the Red Bull Arena and the settlement of three million honey bees at Porsche Leipzig to the establishment of a center for zero-emission aviation fuels, called NetZeroLEJ, around Leipzig/Halle Airport.
The Westin Leipzig was the first hotel in Saxony to be recognised as a “Certified Green Hotel”. Some of the other congress and event venues and conference hotels listed here are also certified green, allowing you to make your event in Leipzig a particularly responsible and environmentally conscious one. The Felix Suiten am Augustusplatz, which have received the international "GreenSign Hotel - Level 4" certification in the sustainability sector, are among them.