SUSTAINABLE HOTELS – ENVIRONMENTAL REPORTING

Topics: Hotel chains, Sustainability, World energy resources and consumption Pages: 27 (5125 words) Published: March 17, 2014
The 2005 World Sustainable Building Conference,
Tokyo, 27-29 September 2005 (SB05Tokyo)

04-006

SUSTAINABLE HOTELS – ENVIRONMENTAL REPORTING ACCORDING TO GREEN GLOBE 21, GREEN GLOBES CANADA / GEM UK, IHEI BENCHMARKHOTEL AND HILTON ENVIRONMENTAL REPORTING

Paulina BOHDANOWICZ, M.Sc.1
Branko SIMANIC, M.Sc.2
Ivo MARTINAC, Ph.D.3
1

Department of Energy Technology, Royal Institute of Technology, Brinellvägen 60, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden, Paulina.Bohdanowicz@energy.kth.se
2
Department of Energy Technology, Royal Institute of Technology, Brinellvägen 60, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden, simanic@energy.kth.se
3
Department of Energy Technology, Royal Institute of Technology, Brinellvägen 60, 100 44 Stockholm, Sweden, im@kth.se

Keywords: hotels, environmental reporting, benchmarking, Green Globe 21, Green Globes Canada, IHEI benchmarkhotel, Hilton Environmental Reporting

Summary
The ever increasing environmental loads generated in/by the built environment, and their growing diversity call for more effective measures aimed at reducing the ecological footprint of buildings. In the tourism industry, hotels account for a significant amount of the overall pollution generated by this sector. The potential of implementing more sustainable practices in the hotel sector requires the availability of reliable tools for assessment and benchmarking of hotel environmental performance. A number of such tools have been developed by international environmental organizations, branch associations and even hotel corporations. The various schemes differ with regard to geographical/climatic areas covered, types of hotel facilities included, detail of environmental information required, benchmarking methods, user-friendliness and implementation cost.

In this paper, four reporting and benchmarking schemes (three of them Internet-based) will be presented and compared, followed by a discussion of their relevance and usefulness for the hotel sector. The tools investigated were developed by different types of organizations, which is reflected by the variety of approaches taken and areas covered. They include Green Globes 21 (GG21), the Green Globes Canada (GGC), International Hotel Environmental Initiative (IHEI) benchmarkhotel, and Hilton Environmental Reporting (HER).

Developing and making available reliable tools for benchmarking environmental performance are important steps in the quest for sustainability in hotel facilities.

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The 2005 World Sustainable Building Conference,
Tokyo, 27-29 September 2005 (SB05Tokyo)

1.

The Concept of Sustainability in the Hotel Industry

In light of the growing environmental degradation, society is becoming increasingly aware of the need of adopting and enforcing more effective measures of environmental protection. Sustainable development, including the development of a more sustainable built environment, has thus become a vital priority and a veritable challenge of our time. The issue of sustainability should be addressed at all levels, in cooperation with policy makers, academia, industry, the general public and many other stakeholders. A number of factors indicate that the hotel industry has an important responsibility in this process. 1.1 Global Hotel Industry and the Environment

Although hotels typically represent less than 5% of a nation’s building stock (Bohdanowicz et al., 2004), the global hotel industry, comprising over 300 000 facilities, constitutes one of the most important sectors of the tourism industry (Olsen et al., 2000). Hotels provide accommodation to half of all national and international visitors (EC, 1998), which, in Europe alone, account for 160-200 million international visitors per year (WTO, 2004). Due to the high level of resource utilization (energy, water, consumables) in hotel facilities, the environmental footprint of hotels is typically larger than those of other types of buildings of similar size (Rada, 1996).

According to Perrera et al. (2003),...
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