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The Colorado Convention Center (CCC) has become the first event and conference venue in the world to be certified to a new international sustainability standard introduced in 2012 to promote responsible environmental and social practices in the event industry.


The Colorado Convention Center offers 2.2 million square feet of meeting and exhibition space.

The CCC achieved Level One certification with the ASTM Standard pertaining to the Evaluation and Selection of Venues for Environmentally Sustainable Meetings, Events, Tradeshows and Conferences (E2774-11).

The CCC is an SMG managed facility.

“The Level One Certification mirrors Denver’s reputation for environmental awareness, we’re proud that the staff of SMG at the Colorado Convention Center represents our City in providing real sustainability,” said Kent Rice, executive director of Arts & Venues Denver, the city agency that owns the CCC.

The standard is one of nine formal, voluntary standards developed by the meetings, conventions, exhibitions and events industry to provide event planners and suppliers with specifications for producing events in a more sustainable manner.

The Venue Standard precisely describes the procedural requirements for venue selection including  the practice of researching, evaluating and choosing the facility for an environmentally sustainable event. The standard specifies performance criteria for staff management, communications, waste management, energy, air quality, water, procurement and community partners.

“We are proud to take a leadership position in advancing a positive environmental and social agenda for the event industry,” said John Adams, regional vice president for SMG and general manager of the CCC. “Being the first venue to be certified to the new standard is clear evidence of our commitment.”

Tamara Kennedy, executive director of the Green Meeting and Industry Council, a non-profit professional meetings association that spearheaded the development of the ASTM Sustainable Meeting Standards, believes more venues will follow in Colorado’s footsteps.

“This is an important moment for the sustainability movement in the event industry,” she said. “CCC’s adoption and certification of compliance with the venue standard is a critical first step that will drive uptake of the standard and inspire others in the industry to follow Denver’s lead.”

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