World Economic Forum On Africa 2019
Upcycling Case Study

Creating partnerships for sustainability: World Economic Forum on Africa 2019

The 28th World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa took place at the CTICC from 4-6 September 2019. Building on the six priority areas that have framed WEF’s sustainability policy since 2015, as well as on its sustainable procurement policy, the Forum has developed its Sustainability Strategy 2021. This is designed to ensure the highest level of sustainability for its offices and events.

WEF’s six priority sustainable policy areas are:

  • Promoting sustainability;
  • Reducing its environmental impact;
  • Upholding the highest standards of governance;
  • Keeping its people safe;
  • Being a responsible employer and a responsible client;
  • Engaging positively with local communities.

Setting objectives and reaping the benefits

To ensure they met their sustainability goals, the WEF’s sustainability consultant worked together with the CTICC team to ensure the event was as “holistically green” as possible. The goals included:


  • Monitoring and measuring waste;
  • Reducing and tracking electricity usage;
  • Making the catering sustainable;
  • Upcycling as much of the material and food used as possible.
WEF Africa 2019

The CTICC ensured the project was successful by doing the following:

  • Meeting with the client’s sustainability consultant to discuss the various event greening options available;
  • Delivering a water-reduced menu to further enhance the sustainability of the event;
  • Serving organic vegetables, fish from the green South African Sustainable Seafood Initiative (SASSI) list and fewer red meat options;
  • Using water from the Vivreau system, served in glass jugs and bottles, while Coca-Cola supplied products only in glass bottles to minimise plastic use;
  • Offering any unused food from the event to CTICC staff or sending it to fly farms, where it was converted to compost;
  • Maintaining the temperature of the building at 22-25 degrees Celsius to minimise the usage of the air-conditioning system;
  • Measuring the electricity daily to monitor energy consumption across the whole event;
  • Arranging for the wood from the event to be donated to one of the CTICC’s Local Community Partners (LCPs), Abalimi Bezekhaya;
  • Donating the balance of the wood waste, together with flowers from the gala dinner, to schools, hospices and old age homes in the Cape Metro area;
  • Diverting 22 640 kg of wood and 5 520 kg of mixed recycling from landfill;
  • Retaining the trees and spekbooms used at the event at the CTICC to continue offsetting WEF’s carbon footprint.
CTICC WEF Africa 2019
CTICC AllSport Expo