Case study: Putting climate action centre stage

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Climate Conference BDI

The Federation of German Industries, BDI, which is made up of industrial trade a service-sector associations and organisations, held its 4th Climate Congress on November 22 and 23, 2021 at AXICA in Berlin. 

The event attracted CEOs, MPs, government representatives and association representatives. They discussed sustainable growth and competitiveness, technological possibilities, and political conditions, to ensure Germany remains an industrialised nation with a reputation for export and innovation. 

More than 200 delegates attended the in-person event, with 2,000 delegates turning in online via a live stream. 

The conference aimed to answer: “How does Germany manage the transformation to a climate-neutral industry?” through discussion on how to design an economic programme for climate protection for the energy, transportation, building and producing industry. 

These discussions led to the publication of the BDI ‘Climate Paths 2.0’, a study in to emerging into a climate saving future. But, as BDI president Siegfried Russwurm said, there is much work to be done beyond the conference and the study. 

“There are no easy solutions, there is a lot of hard work ahead of us, before our entire society. The pace of the expansion of renewable energies must be multiplied, energy efficiency must be increased, and innovations initiated, and their widespread use promoted. The capture and storage of CO 2 will also have to play a significant role in the future if we want to achieve our extremely ambitious climate goals. The recently published BDI climate path study by BCG has impressively confirmed this.”

The conference and its curated education programme tackled challenges of how to continue innovating in a challenging global environment, with several discussions during the conference dedicated to the 860-billion-euro investment urgently needed in infrastructure to ensure Germany reaches its target of cutting emissions by at least 65 percent by 2030 compared to 1990 levels, and 88 percent by 2040.

Practicing what you preach

With such important issues being discussed, the Climate Congress needed a conference venue that reflected its goals. Since 2018, the AXICA has been certified as a sustainable meeting venue and caterer and since 2021, the venue and the catering services is carbon-neutral certified. 

An entirely meatless and vegetarian menu was served at the conference, with a large majority of ingredients sourced locally. Delegates tucked into tomato and feta muffins, apple sea buckthorn yoghurt – a popular dish in Germany as it grows at the Baltic Sea, bulgur wheat salad, buckwheat blini and sour cream, apple cakes with buttermilk and tofu chocolate mousse. 

With a budget of around £70,000, BDI was able to securely the centrally located and sustainable venue in the Berlin-Mitte district where most federal associations and corporate representations are headquartered.

Where the hybrid event element was concerned, AXICA was able to offer BDI the option to use its exclusive in-house audio-visual and IT partner to ensure a smooth virtual element. 

“It was an honour for us to be the hosting venue for the BDI climate congress as it perfectly reflects our AXICA vision and mission,” said AXICA managing director, Marc-Alexander Mundstock.

Holly Patrick
Written By
Holly Patrick
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A desire to travel led Holly Patrick to the business meetings and events world and she’s never looked back. Holly takes a particular interest in event sustainability and creating a diverse and inclusive industry. When she’s not working, she can be found rolling skating along Brighton seafront listening to an eclectic playlist, featuring the likes of Patti Smith, Sean Paul, and Arooj Aftab.

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