Recognised as a global sustainability leader, Melbourne has cemented its number one position as a sustainable city in the Asia-Pacific region for business events in the Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS-Index).

Ranked number 11 in the world overall, Melbourne and Melbourne Convention Bureau's (MCB) sustainability performance was evaluated based on the city environmental strategy and infrastructure, city social sustainability performance, industry supplier support and MCB strategy and initiatives.

The GDS-Index is a collaborative business initiative that aims to promote the sustainable growth of international meeting destinations, highlighting best practices and responsible business tourism. It helps destinations, event planners and business events suppliers to drive and recognise sustainable practices in the business events industry. MCB partnered with City of Melbourne and Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) on the GDS-Index.

Melbourne’s highest ranking was in the social category scoring 90 per cent followed by convention bureau performance, achieving 76.48 per cent.

MCB Chief Executive, Julia Swanson, said MCB has worked collaboratively with all its partners and the business events industry on initiatives to strengthen the city’s sustainability credentials.

“Supporting Melbourne as a sustainable destination for international business events is a key goal for MCB. Together, we’re taking proactive steps to ensure that business events in Melbourne result in positive social and environmental impacts that are sustainable and leave a lasting legacy.”

Many International Associations want to host events in line with recognised sustainability standards. To facilitate this, MCB has developed valuable tools and resources for those in the meeting and events industry to continuously improve the sustainability, inclusivity and accessibility of their operations. In addition, MCB has also introduced a new Social Outcomes Strategy, encouraging event owners to incorporate specialised legacy concepts focused on delivering wider social and economic outcomes when hosting their events in Melbourne. This includes now capturing information on sustainability initiatives, programs and actions for clients’ events in Melbourne as part of their sponsorship agreements.

Top marks were achieved for Melbourne’s convention facilities. MCEC is the first centre in the world to be awarded the 6-Star Green Star rating for its innovative environmental design and operational features and in 2021, MCEC launched its Sustainability Strategy 2021-26 to further its commitment to sustainability targets and continually ensure the venue is a sustainable events destination.

The city has received national and international recognition as a top destination and world leader in many areas including environmental, economic and sustainable initiatives including the Climate Mitigation Strategy 2050, Waste and Resource Recovery Strategy 2030 and a commitment by the Victorian State Government to net zero emissions by 2050.

City of Melbourne Lord Mayor, Sally Capp said “In normal circumstances, Melbourne’s business events see 14 million delegates descend on our city each year. It is fantastic that these events are being recognised for their sustainability as well as their contribution to our economy,” the Lord Mayor said.

“This incredible accolade shows that Melbourne is leading the Asia Pacific in thinking green while bringing the world’s top minds together for business and innovation. Well done to the Melbourne Convention Bureau, and every Melbourne venue and supplier that helped us secure the top position.”

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Media enquiries:

Laura Gleich, Melbourne Convention Bureau             

T +61 3 9002 2309 / E laura.gleich@melbournecb.com.au