WTTC Debuts “Hotel Sustainability Basics” Guidelines

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has launched its “Hotel Sustainability Basics” at its Global Summit in Manila, Philippines. The initiative is a globally recognized and coordinated set of criteria that all hotels should implement as a minimum to drive responsible travel and tourism. It will help every hotel address and improve their environmental impact.

WTTC’s “Hotel Sustainability Basics” highlights 12 actions that are fundamental to hotel sustainability. It provides the global hospitality sector with a baseline of positive actions to be taken to ensure they meet at least the minimum sustainability requirements. The initiative has already gained support from global groups such as Jin Jiang International (Holdings) Co., Ltd. including its affiliates Jin Jiang Hotels, Louvre Hotels Group and Radisson Hotel Group, Accor, Barceló Hotel Group, Meliá Hotels International, Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL), besides key hotel associations such as the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) and the Hotel Association of India (HAI), among others. Collectively this represents over 50,000 hotels worldwide.

WTTC’s "Hotel Sustainability Basics" provides the global hospitality sector with a baseline of positive actions to be taken to ensure they meet at least the minimum sustainability requirements. Julia Simpson, president and CEO of WTTC, said, “We are launching the 'Hotel Sustainability Basics' to ensure no hotel, however small, is left behind in the drive to introduce a basis sustainability measures within a minimum level the next three years.”

The criteria include actions to measure and reduce energy use, measure and reduce water use, identify and reduce waste, and measure and reduce carbon emissions. It also includes a linen reuse program; use of green cleaning products; the elimination of plastic straws, stirrers and single-use plastic water bottles; the implementation of bulk amenity dispensers; and measures to benefit local communities. WTTC is calling upon hotel operators, owners, associations, and investors around the world to officially support the initiative and work across their networks to implement the criteria over the coming three years.

The criteria have been developed under the leadership of WTTC and via a working group of 11 hotel companies, with the support of the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance. The working group members include Accor, Barcelo Hotel Group, Huazhu Group Limited including their affiliate Deutsche Hospitality, Indian Hotels Company Limited, Jin Jiang Hotels, Louvre Hotels Group, Meliá Hotels International, Minor International, NH Hotel Group and Radisson Hotel Group.

Wolfgang M. Neumann, Sustainable Hospitality Alliance chair, said, “This initiative acts as a stepping stone to the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance’s 'Pathway to Net Positive Hospitality,' which will enable every hotel to take a strategic and progressive approach to achieving a positive environmental impact, whatever their starting point.”

Randy Durband, CEO of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, said: “The GSTC Industry Criteria for Hotels serve as the global standard for sustainable hospitality and the Basics map to eight of those that have been frequently mentioned by our global partners as essential first steps. As such, GSTC supports the application of this program and we encourage users that do not comply to them currently take steps to move quickly to do so.”

Simpson stated that in addition to owners which represent a number of hotels, can become WTTC-recognized supporters by endorsing the initiative and completing the "Green Lodging Trends Survey" (GLTS) to benchmark their performance and keep track of progress.

Initially eight of the 12 criteria are mandatory, whilst others can be committed to and covered within the first three years.

For more information, visit action.wttc.org/hotel-sustainability-basics.

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