FCM is committed to making our events as beneficial as possible for the environment and the local economy. We make every effort to be a leader in sustainability for all our activities and we partner with organizations that have a similar mindset.

Carbonzero logo

FCM is a proud partner of carbonzero, an organization dedicated to reducing Canada's carbon (GHG) emissions and stopping climate change worldwide. Carbonzero is pleased to be the carbon offset provider for delegate travel (voluntary) and venue energy usage for FCM events.

Thank you to our Green Travelers

Delegate travel accounts for over 97% of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of FCM events. This is why we offer the option to purchase carbon offsets as part of delegate registration, in collaboration with Carbonzero.

In 2018, 40% of travel to and from the Annual Conference in Halifax ― a total of 1,162 tonnes of GHG emissions ― was offset by delegates who purchased carbon offsets through their online registration. This is equivalent to taking 247 passenger vehicles off the road for one year, or the carbon sequestered by 19,214 tree seedlings grown for 10 years.

The offsets were invested in the Pointe-de-l'Île School Board Energy Efficiency Project, which implemented energy efficiency measures and fuel switching at all 63 buildings of the Commission Scolaire de la Pointe-de-l’Île.

In 2019, a total of 869 tonnes of GHG emissions were offset for the Annual Conference in Quebec City. Data on the total GHG emissions for delegate travel for the event will be available in early 2020.

Green venues

The Metro Toronto Convention Centre, venue for FCM's 2020 Annual Conference and Trade Show, is an industry leader in sustainability and their efforts are recognized through various awards and certifications.  Learn about their commitment to environmentally sustainable practices.

To reduce water and energy consumption, many hotels offer programs where guests can opt out of daily housekeeping services. The Fairmont Le Château Frontenac, one of FCM’s 2019 conference hotels, is planting trees in the name of their eco-conscious guests in the Montmorency forest, the largest teaching and research forest in the world. Learn more about this program on the hotel’s website.

Our actions

Here are some examples of the actions we are taking that highlight our approach to greening our events:


  • Selecting conference venues with established green practices and sustainability programs.
  • Working with host venues to minimize the environmental impact of our events.
  • Choosing hotels and amenities that are in close proximity to our event venues, to reduce travel distances and encourage the use of sustainable transportation.
  • Reducing paper consumption by:
    • Favouring electronic communication materials to promote our events.
    • Providing electronic platforms to access our programs and meeting materials (web app and website) to limit the amount of printed materials in delegate packages.
    • Printing all materials on recycled paper.
  • Encouraging our delegates in the registration form to purchase carbon offsets to compensate their travel emissions.
  • Favouring local speakers and suppliers as much as possible.

During the conference


  • Making recycling stations available to delegates throughout the conference.
  • Minimizing photocopying and printing.
  • Reusing signage.
  • Providing pitchers of water instead of bottled water.
  • Using bulk food supplies instead of individually wrapped packets, e.g. bowls of sugar cubes instead of packets.
  • Reducing and where possible eliminating the use of disposable plates, cups, utensils and napkins.
  • Actively encouraging trade show exhibitors to minimize paper and other handouts.
  • Donating leftover supplies and promotional items to schools or charity organizations.

Local economy

  • Favouring local, seasonal and sustainable menu items.
  • Using local, environmentally friendly suppliers.

Energy and transportation

  • Turning off lights and shutting down electronics in support rooms at the end of each day.
  • Purchasing carbon offsets for our energy use within the conference venue.
  • Encouraging walking tours and active transportation to move from one conference site to another.
  • Encouraging hybrid bus options (when possible) for study tours and bus transportation.

Monitoring and reporting

  • Tracking environmental performance indicators, such as the volume of waste produced.


  • Making post-presentation materials available electronically instead of providing hard copies.
  • Analyzing the environmental impact of our events and identifying opportunities for improvement.

For more information about FCM’s commitment to environmental sustainability read the FCM Sustainability Charter.

© 2024 Federation of Canadian Municipalities