Sustainable event management

We are pioneers in sustainable event management

General Shareholders' Meeting Events Results presentation

Iberdrola becomes the first company listed in the IBEX 35 to broaden the scope of its Sustainable Event Management System to include ISO 20121 certification for its Results Presentations and Capital Markets Day. The company was already the first in Spain's IBEX 35 stock market index to take steps in this direction in 2016, and became the first in the world's top 10 electricity corporations to be given the AENOR standardisation body's seal for Sustainable Event Management Systems, which initially only covered the General Shareholders' Meeting and now includes two more major corporate events.

As proof of our commitment to sustainability and continuous improvement, we have once again expanded the sustainable events management system in 2024, including the 1st Sustainable Legal Advice Forum promoted by Iberdrola. This forum thus becomes the first event of its kind to be certified as a sustainable event.

Sustainable event. Iberdrola.
Iberdrola certifies its Results Presentations, General Shareholders' Meeting, Capital Markets & ESG Day and Sustainable Legal Advice Forum as sustainable events.

The Spanish Association for Standardisation and Certification (AENOR) has awarded ISO 20121:2012 Sustainable Events certification [PDF] External link, opens in new window. to Iberdrola's General Shareholders' Meeting, Results Presentations, Capital Markets & ESG Day and Sustainable Legal Advice Forum promoted by Iberdrola. Iberdrola is now the first company to gain AENOR certification for these corporate events under the same management system.

This acknowledgement proves that every aspect of Iberdrola's events is conceived to generate the greatest positive impact in all three areas of sustainability: financial, social and environmental. Using its carefully designed sustainable management system, the company strives to ensure that all corporate events generate financial, social and environmental benefits for the community.

Having achieved this certification is thanks to Iberdrola's Sustainable Management Policy, which establishes that the group's events must strictly comply with all applicable requirements — especially in terms of health and safety, noise, waste, privacy and personal data protection standards — as well as promoting accessibility, inclusion and non-discrimination in their planning and execution.

Another step forward for Iberdrola in the fulfilment if the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A path that began in 2016, the year in which Iberdrola was a pioneer in adopting the ISO 20121 standard and implementing it at the General Shareholders' Meeting.

Iberdrola Sustainable Events Certificate

Iberdrola was a pioneer when it came to adopting ISO 20121 in 2016 and implemented it at the Shareholders’ Meeting that same year

  • 2016 Iberdrola was the first Ibex-35 company to certify its General Shareholders' Meeting as a sustainable event

  • 2019 Iberdrola was the first company to renew the certificate

  • 2020 Iberdrola was the first company to include the General Shareholders' Meeting, Results Presentations and Capital Markets Day in a single sustainable event certificate

  • 2022 Iberdrola renews its certificate for the second time and expands the scope of the certificate for the General Shareholders' Meeting and Capital Markets & ESG Day events

  • 2023 Iberdrola expands the management system for sustainable events, including the 1st Forum of Sustainable Legal Advice promoted by Iberdrola

Iberdrola sustainable event management system audited and certified by AENOR: Iberdrola

SEE INFOGRAPHIC: Iberdrola sustainable events certificate [PDF]

What is standard ISO 20121?

All events of any kind have an environmental, economic and social impact on the communities in which they are held. On the positive side, the most notable impact of an event is its contribution to the local economy. However, the downside is the high energy and water consumption that this type of events involve, as well as the vast quantities of waste generated by the organisation and attendees.

To tackle this problem, on 15 June 2012 — with the London Olympic Games just around the corner — the world's largest international standards body, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), issued ISO 20121:2012: Event sustainability management systems. This voluntary standard was created to help events organisers to improve the sustainability of their events across all stages: design, planning, execution, implementation, review and follow-up activities after the sustainable event.

The purpose of this standard is not to certify the event itself, but the management system of the company that organises the event in order to ensure that it is carried out according to sustainability criteria. When awarding the certification, ISO verifies that a company's event management system is efficient and has been designed in accordance with the ISO 20121 standard.

Benefits of ISO 20121 certification

The benefits inherent in ISO 20121 certification include:

  Helps reduce the carbon footprint of the event.

  Reduces event costs by optimising the consumption of resources.

  Improves corporate reputation.

  Commitment to the environment motivates employees and attracts and retains talent.

  Improves control over the value chain.

  Contributes to the local economy.


How do we make our events more sustainable?

We work on the three pillars of sustainability: social, economic and environmental. To this end, we set ourselves guidelines and objectives to ensure that the impacts of our events are as beneficial as possible year after year. Within these objectives, we propose accessibility, environmental, awareness-raising and participation actions, and support for the local community.

Depending on the event, the target audience and the purpose of the event, the most appropriate sustainability actions are defined. These include the following:

Improving accessibility

  • Multi language
  • Live broadcast
  • Promoting remote participation
  • 100% accessible location
  • Sign language, subtitling and audio description

Minimising environmental impact

  • Green purchasing criteria
  • Reuse of materials
  • Segregation and re-evaluation of waste
  • Emissions offset project

Raising awareness of sustainability issue

  • Traction to main suppliers
  • Analysis and communication of the environmental impact of events
  • Awareness-raising for suppliers and event participants
  • Communication campaigns aimed at employees

Supporting the local community

  • Promoting young people's entry into the labour market
  • Encouraging equal recruitment of staff

Sustainable Event Management System 2023

Carbon footprint1
General Shareholders’ Meeting 26,483 kg CO2 eq.
Results Presentations 345 kg CO2 eq.

Total emissions: 28,828 Kg CO2 eq.

Carbon oseing

Project for the installation of high-efficiency wood-burning stoves in Malawi

Total emissions: 28,298 Kg CO2 eq.

Absorption of 27 tonnes of CO2 (In addition to halting deforestation in Malawi, it also reduces health risks from indoor smoke pollution)

Environmental footprint2 Ways in which we reduce it

  • 2,822 Pts General Shareholders’ Meeting
  • 44 Pts Results Presentations

Use of certified 100% renewable energy

Re-use of 100% of the furniture

  • Waste segregation during set-up, dismantling and running of the event
  • Use of energy-efficient labelled equipment
  • Sustainable water packaging distribution

Total of the 2 types of event 2,866 Pts The stated objective is met

Other ways to strengthen the sustainability of our events

  • 100% accessible event More than 20 actions to ensure the accessibility of our events
  • Helping the local community Promoting youth employability and ensuring equal opportunity and inclusion criteria
  • Raising awareness of sustainability among all staff involved in the event

(¹) The carbon footprint measures the amount of CO2 emissions - and other greenhouse gases - equivalent to the eect caused by an event, directly or indirectly, on global warming. These gases include methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and carbon dioxide (CO2). To account for the footprint, the unit of measurement CO2 equivalent (CO2 eq) is established, which is equivalent to the emission of all greenhouse gases mentioned above.

(²) The environmental footprint refers to the indirect impact of an event on the environment throughout its life cycle. It is measured through a calculation tool called environmental units (UMAS) that take into account multiple eects such as water, air or waste footprint. It is a dimensionless quantity and is therefore measured in points (Pt).

SEE INFOGRAPHIC: Sustainable event management system 2023 [PDF]

If you have any doubts, queries or suggestions about our sustainable event management activities, please contact us at