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Dedication to Sustainability

Founded on the very principles of sustainability as Japan’s ancient capital, Kyoto boasts an over 1,200 year track record of social stability, stewardship and living in harmony with our environment.
Kyoto is surrounded by lush mountains and filled with green space with strict building height restrictions and restrictions on advertising signage that protect our scenery. Recycling and garbage separation is universally practiced and we offer some of the world’s greatest public transportation.
On December 11, 1997 the Kyoto Protocol on global warming was signed at ICC Kyoto. Since than “Kyoto” has become synonymous with environmental leadership.



In recent years, sustainability has become increasingly important in the meetings and events industry. In June of 2016, Kyoto became the first city in Asia to join the Global Destination Sustainability Index, demonstrating Kyoto’s continued dedication to pioneering in sustainability.
We are working to make sure that Kyoto will not only be a satisfying event destination for meeting participants, but that everyone in our city, including residents and industry partners can have a healthy, sustainable, and mutually beneficial relationship with us as an event destination.
The Kyoto Convention and Visitors Bureau is excited to help you maximize the sustainability of your meeting by incorporating sustainable practices and utilizing service providers.

For more information, or help on incorporating sustainability into your event, please contact us

Vision and Goals for Sustainability

The spirit of sustainability has always been a part of our city even though the word was not originally a part of the Japanese language. Looking towards the future, we would like to help our industry partners become conscious of the complete concept of “sustainability” and create a more concrete and measurable initiative for sustainable meetings in Kyoto so we can continue to improve and grow.

1. Attract Sustainable Meetings

Bring meetings to Kyoto that clearly make sustainability a priority, create a strong market and measurable demand for sustainability in meetings in Kyoto. Specifically we would like to especially attract meetings that related to the environment, science (including medical science), culture, and history.

2. Reduce Kyoto’s Carbon Footprint

Promote the use of environmentally sustainable practices, including Kyoto’s carbon offset program.

3. Improve Kyoto’s Sustainability Performance

Provide leadership and education to our industry partners to better understand sustainability, including the environmental, social/cultural, and economic aspects.

4. Support Traditional Industries

Protect Kyoto’s unique cultural heritage by promoting the use of traditional industries and Kyoto culture in meetings.

*These goals are based largely off the goals in the Kyoto City 2020 MICE Strategy plan that was established in 2014.

Incorporating Sustainability Into Meetings in Kyoto

Do You Kyoto? – Kyoto City’s Carbon Offset Program for Meetings and Events

Offset your meeting’s carbon footprint by purchasing carbon credits generated by the local community. Each credit is equivalent to one metric ton of C02 and costs \10,000.


This program was created and is overseen by the Kyoto City government to provide education and incentives to help local businesses reduce their carbon output. Carbon credits are generated by neighborhood associations and small and medium sized local businesses in Kyoto who have reduced carbon output through improving their facilities, and taking specific measures to save energy. Kyoto City then buys these credits from these businesses and resells them to large meetings and events to help them offset their carbon footprint.

Enrich your Meeting with Kyoto Culture

Bring Kyoto’s wonderful culture into your event and make it truly special. This will ensure that the economic impact of your meeting directly helps the local community and protects the wonderful cultural heritage of Kyoto’s traditional industries. Examples include:

  • ●Performances – Maiko/Geiko (Kyoto Geisha) dancing and music performances, Japanese traditional music/Taiko drumming, etc.
  • ●Traditional Crafts – Provide traditional gifts for delegates or visit the workshop of an artisan and have a hands-on experience with potters, bamboo craft, weavers, dyers and textile artisans, lacquerware artisans, etc. Kimono wearing experiences also possible.
  • ●Food culture – Sake barrel opening ceremonies, Tea ceremony and tea picking experiences, Japanese confectionary making experiences, etc.
  • ●Custom conference goods – Collaborate with local artisans to make custom goods for your conference. In the past custom meeting bags have been made using local textiles. Contact us for more info.

Subsidy support is available for using Kyoto culture

Meetings that incorporate Kyoto culture can eligible for special subsidies that can cover part or all of the costs. Please note that that various eligibility requirements apply and advance application is required. Subsidy funds are limited. Meetings that wish to utilize subsidies should contact the bureau well in advance.

Enjoying Kyoto on Bicycle

Kyoto’s high concentration of world class tourist attractions and friendly roadways makes us one of the great cities in the world to enjoy on foot or on bicycle. Visitors to Kyoto can enjoy a compact and easy to navigate city that is surrounded by lush mountains, dotted with countless areas of greenspace, and bisected by crystal clear rivers.

Public Transportation Access

Virtually all of Kyoto City is easily accessible via public transportation. 97% of Kyoto’s hotels offer easy access to convention facilities via public transportation. Kyoto’s public transportation, is safe, user-friendly, reliable, on-time and features signage and announcements in English. Furthermore, 41% of Kyoto’s hotels are located within walking distance of one of our conference facilities. Large congresses can be easily planned that are entirely accessible by walking and public transit alone.

Kyoto Convention Passes

Kyoto offers discounted transit passes for qualifying meetings.

Sustainable Suppliers and Service Providers

Please refer to the following link for a list of some of the sustainable suppliers and service providers available in Kyoto. Please feel free to contact us if you have a specific inquiry.

Please contact us using the below inquiry form.