• Greening RSNA 2012

  • RSNA is committed to hosting one of the greenest and cleanest meetings in the industry. Our efforts focus on recycling, energy conservation, food and beverage service and transportation. Here are some things RSNA and McCormick Place are doing, and how you can help.

    Through our recycling efforts at the 2012 meeting we had a facility diversion rate of 70 percent (compared to 63 percent in 2011).

    What does Facility Diversion Rate mean? 

    Waste diversion is the prevention and reduction of generated waste through source reduction, recycling, reuse, or composting. Waste diversion generates a host of environmental, financial, and social benefits, including conserving energy, reducing disposal costs, and reducing the burden on landfills and other waste disposal methods.  

    2012 savings: 

    • 3,852 trees
    • 86,096 gallons of oil
    • 929,379 kilowatts of electricity
    • 1,585,971 gallons of water
    • 752 yards of landfill space

    Meeting Materials, Recycling and Conservation 

    • Recycling receptacles can be found throughout McCormick Place for paper, bottles, cans and general waste. Dispose of recyclable material correctly into clearly marked bins throughout the convention center.
    • RSNA offers an expansive selection of electronic documentation for its annual meeting and provides QR codes, apps and mobile-optimized tools as an alternative to printed materials.
    • The Program In Brief will be offered to all professional attendees and will be distributed only to those who choose to take a copy. Abandoned copies will be recycled.
    • Badges, badge holders and meeting bags can be recycled in the appropriate receptacles at the conclusion of an attendee’s stay at the Annual Meeting.
    • New this year: the professional meeting bag and the plastic bags utilized onsite are being replaced with a reusable tote bag. RSNA donates unused meeting bags to a local charity.

    Energy Conservation 

    • Based on RSNA scheduling, McCormick Place minimizes energy by reducing lights, power, escalators and HVAC (heating, ventilating and air conditioning) during move-in/move-out in the exhibit halls and meeting rooms when not in use and uses compact fluorescent lights throughout the convention center in place of incandescent lamps. Do your part by turning off the lights, electronics and heat in your hotel room when it’s unoccupied.
    • McCormick Place announced they have committed to offsetting 100 percent of its electricity usage with clean, affordable wind power. In doing so, they have purchased Green-e Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) generated from wind power to match 100 percent of the annual electricity demand.


    • RSNA offers complimentary Metra train passes and shuttle bus transportation to travel to/from McCormick Place as well as discounted airport shuttle service via Go Airport Express. (Fact: Traveling in a shared airport shuttle saves 60% of a person’s carbon footprint compared to traveling in a taxi.)
    • McCormick Place reserves 5% of parking in Lot A for low-emitting and fuel efficient vehicles.

    Food & Beverage Service 

    • Bring your own refillable coffee mug or beverage bottle and receive $0.25 off any fresh brewed drip coffee or fountain beverage purchase at any food outlets at McCormick Place (excluding Connie’s Pizza and McDonald’s).
    • Bring your own refillable water bottle or purchase an RSNA tumbler in the RSNA Store – fill up during the week at the large water dispensers throughout McCormick Place instead of plastic bottles and cups.
    • Savor Catering Service has eliminated the use of Styrofoam/polystyrene plastic products, uses biodegradable flatware, straws, serving dishes and cups in the food courts, offers reusable china or biodegradable plates, straws, cups and cutlery for catering functions and donates all excess food to a local food bank. (Fact: During RSNA 2012, over 2,000 pounds of food was donated.)
    • Food selection sourcing, method and preparation and seasonality are taken into consideration when designing menus for both catering and restaurant operations -- 100% of seafood purchase meets the Marine Stewardship Council sourcing guidelines.
    • McCormick Place has partnered with Chicago Botanic Gardens and the Windy City Harvest Program. Fresh herbs and vegetables are grown seasonally on the West Building’s two acre rooftop garden.
    • The garden is expected to yield up to 4,000 pounds of fresh produce which will be utilized for catering and restaurant operations throughout McCormick Place. By producing lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, kale, eggplant and more allows this produce to go from the roof to the kitchen in a matter of minutes.

    Additional Facts 

    McCormick Place: 

    • The West Building attained Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification from the U.S. Green Build Council.
    • Developed a Green Action Team which consists of key staff, contractor service providers and cleaning service providers who work within the facility to cooperatively provide an environmentally responsible facility and services.
    • Utilizes a waste disposal partner which sorts waste and recyclables separately to determine more accurate facility diversion rates. (Fact: The facility diversion rate for RSNA 2012 was 70% - up from 63% in 2011.)
    • Uses “green seal” certified cleaning products and restroom products that are 100% post-consumer recycled content paper.


    • Has more Green Seal certified hotels than any other city in the nation – these hotels adhere to stringent standards of energy efficiency, water conservation, recycling and waste reduction, and environmentally-conscious practices.
    • The Green Chicago Restaurant Co-op continues its Guaranteed Green program that helps Chicago-area diners identify and support local restaurants that take significant steps toward protecting the environment.