Environmental & Social Responsibility

The 2015 Annual Meeting Planning Team has incorporated environmentally and socially responsible practices into all conference activities to ensure the least impact on the natural and human environment.  Our commitment to this responsibility includes:
OCC garden

Credit: Travel Portland

The Oregon Convention Center (OCC) – the site of this year’s conference – became the first Green Building Council’s® Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design™ (LEED) certified convention center in the world in 2004 and earned LEED Platinum, the highest certification, in 2014. The OCC’s rain-garden, which filters stormwater run-off from the site, and eco-friendly pest management practices contributed to its’ Salmon-Safe facility certification in 2008 and 2013.  In 2014, the OCC earned the Convention Industry Council’s APEX/ASTM certification, the first standards created uniquely for green meetings and events. This program, verified by the Green Meeting Industry Council (GMIC), gives the OCC a roadmap for planning sustainable events, helping vendors and guests practice green habits, and working with our community to support the environment. The Center’s energy and natural resource conservation practices include: energy and water efficient fixtures, electric vehicle charging stations, 100% renewable energy offsets for electricity and natural gas, and a zero waste management plan.  Approximately 70% of the OCC’s waste is diverted from landfills through recycling, composting, and donating excess food and materials to local non-profits.  The OCC’s caterer, pacificwild catering, serves fresh, locally sourced, seasonal Northwest foods and beverages. Leftover food is donated to the Blanchet House, a local shelter, and the Oregon Food Bank.  In August 2015, the OCC will install one of the largest solar arrays on a convention center in the U.S. More than 6,500 rooftop solar panels are expected to produce two megawatts, equivalent to 25 percent of the facility’s electricity.

  • The OCC is located one block to the Max Light Rail system, for convenient access to the airport and popular Portland attractions. See our ground transportation page for helpful tips on exploring Portland by Max Rail, streetcar, bus, bike, and foot.
  • Green hotels near the Oregon Convention Center meet the industry’s strictest environmental standards for energy, water, and waste reduction, and community engagement (e.g., purchasing local food products, donating to local shelters and food banks). Our Accommodations Committee has facilitated your access to low impact, community-friendly lodging by reserving conference-rate room blocks at the Portland Marriot City Center, Hotel Eastlund, DoubleTree by Hilton Portland, Hilton Portland and Executive Tower, and Courtyard Downton/Convention Center.
  • Our families are an important part of who we are and what we do as fisheries professionals. Hosting a family-friendly event was a high priority for our Accommodations and Child Care Committees. Our child care page provides information for on-site child care accommodations and local child care resources.  We look forward to seeing you and your family at the Annual Meeting this August!
  • Supporting eco-friendly Oregon vesr logosAFS Silipint Mockupendors and businesses has been a cornerstone of our meeting planning efforts. The free Silipint goodie in your meeting bag is an unbreakable, reusable, and recyclable 16 ounce cup good for hot and cold beverages. Silipint products are designed and headquartered in Bend, Oregon and ethically produced in factories (in Idaho, Los Angeles, and China) that are both ISO 9001 and 12001 compliant for environmental and labor practices.

The Networking Events will feature beverages from Deschutes Brewery, Columbia Distributing, Hopworks Urban Brewery, Adelsheim Vineyard, and Croft Vineyards.  Deschutes Brewery was the first brewer to source Salmon-Safe certified hops and continues to be a national champion of environmentally certified hops and environmental causes. In May 2015, Deschutes Brewery partnered with Columbia Distributing to raise more than $16,000 for Salmon-Safe.  We will have Hopworks Urban Brewery beer on tap.  Hopworks, Portland’s first ecobrewery, earned certification as the world’s first Salmon-Safe Certified brewing campus in 2015We will serve Pinot Gris from Adelsheim Vineyard located in the Chehalem Mountains of Oregon’s north Willamette Valley – all Adelsheim wines are certified Oregon Certified Sustainable Wine and the winery is Salmon-Safe and LIVE certified sustainable.  The Grande Reception will feature wine from Croft Vineyards, an Oregon Tilth Organic, Salmon-Safe certified winery located in Polk County, Oregon.

The Planning Team has made a concerted effort to reduce waste in meeting planning and implementation.  Our Information, Promotions, Printed Programs, and Signs and Banners, and Networking Committees have raised the reduce, reuse, recycle bar through the use of paperless technology (e.g., Meeting Website, Meeting PRECYCLErogram mobile app and PDF, OCC electronic billboards, electronic options for posters), recyclable materials (e.g., recycled/recyclable meeting bag; cardboard, aluminum, and recyclable vinyl signs and banners instead of foam core), and waste reduction incentives (e.g., only meeting attendees that pay for and reserve a printed copy of the Meeting Program will receive one this year).  Recycling containers are provided at all Meeting activities and composting bins are provided at most of the events to reduce our landfill footprint. The OCC will provide a waste audit that summarizes our Meeting’s waste generation and endpoint (landfill, recycle, compost, and donation); this information will be helpful for planning future Annual Meetings.

Highlighsoul riverting our host city’s rich history, cultural diversity, and environmental progressiveness was a key component of meeting planning. Portland is home to the ninth largest Native American population in the United States. Our meeting logo honors our Native American Tribes who are our first citizens and active fishery co-managers in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest.  Our networking events – Portland Spirit Willamette River Cruise for students, Spawning Run/Carcass Crawl at Governor Tom McCall Waterfront Park, and Grande Social at the Portland Center for Performing Arts’ Antoinette Hatfield and Arlene Schnitzer theaters – will introduce you to key natural, historical, and cultural landmarks in the city.  In the spirit of goodwill, our Planning Team will be making a host city donation to Soul River Runs Wild, a 501(c)3 non-profit based in Portland, Oregon, that brings Armed Services veterans as mentors and inner city youth participants together into our wild rivers through fly-fishing to encourage youth to grow and become ambassadors of our natural environment.

  • We have volunteers stationed at the Meeting Help Desk (at the registration table), and each event to help you navigate to the OCC, the networking activities, and answer any questions you may have. Also, we’ve arranged to have notices on the Portland Airport Monitors to help you navigate from the Airport to the Max Rail and Meeting site.

Your Part

The following tips and tools will help you minimize your impacts while attending the meeting.

  • Consult the Oregon Convention Center’s Sustainability Guide for Exhibitors for tips on reducing your waste.  Consider donating excess exhibit products (e.g., books, t-shirts, office supplies, trinkets, bags, etc.).
  • Use recycled or reusable materials; bring your own water bottle, mug, and shopping bag.
  • Unplug, turn off, and shutdown – turn off lights, computer, TV, and other electronic devices when you aren’t using them.
  • Calculate your carbon footprint (www.myfootprint.org) and talk to your airline about purchasing carbon credits to offset CO2 emissions associated with your travel.
  • Take public transportation, cycle, walk, or carpool to the meeting events.  Visit our Share a Ride Forum to coordinate travel with other attendees.
  • Favor eco-friendly, locally made products; buy fresh locally-grown produce, fish, and meat that has been sustainably grown or caught.
  • Patronize environmentally friendly hotels, and local restaurants, museums, shops, and services.  Visit the Travel Oregon website for more information about Portland’s top sites to visit including the Japanese Garden, Lan Su Chinese Garden, Powell’s Books, Portland Farmer’s Market, International Rose Test Garden, and Voodoo Doughnuts, to name a few.
  • Share a hotel room; turn down the thermostat; and reuse your linens (both towels and sheets).  Visit our Share a Room Forum to coordinate lodging with other attendees.
  • Portland is a compassionate city that embraces its multicultural diversity, LGBT community, homeless citizens, and hipster nation.  Please be culturally aware and sensitive as you visit and enjoy our beautiful city.

Lastly, give us your feedback and suggestions.  Let us know what we did well regarding environmental and social responsibility and areas where we should improve our practices for future meetings.

Portland - Where It's Easy Being GreenPortland-Infographic-ArtV41

Voted the greenest city in America multiple times, Portland is literally covered with green space.  One fourth of the city is shaded by tree canopy and the city is home to 288 parks including: Forest Park, the largest urban forest (at 5,157 acres) in the United States, and the 24-inch-long Mill Ends Park, the world’s smallest dedicated park.   

Portland has received numerous accolades for its public mass transit system. Additionally, its’ hundreds of miles of dedicated bike lanes and trails have led to a #1 ranking as America’s Best Bike City (Bicycling Magazine 2012) and the League of American Cyclists’ Platinum-level Bicycle Friendly Community ranking. Certified green buildings, renewable energy sources, and a 60% waste recycling rate make Portland one of the most sustainable cities in the United States.