It is estimated that if all the hotels in the United States became “green”, that would be equivalent to transforming 12 million barrels of oil into 139 million trees. Looking at these facts shows that it is essential that there is a concern in the hotel industry to take concerted measures to reduce the environmental footprint. Because if there is no sustainable world there will also be no hotels.
What's this about being sustainable?
Various reports by the UN and a number of environmental organizations in recent years have outlined a very negative scenario concerning the health of our planet, the impact mankind has on the environment, and climate changes.
Whilst the scenario may be bleak, the growing awareness that has been raised in the last few decades appears to be having some positive effects: there is an increasing conversation on the negative effects contemporary life has on the environment, from the amount of plastic in the oceans to the greenhouse effect caused by the release of carbon.
These concerns have long since extended beyond the limits of environmental associations and the individual concerns of each person, and they have reached the business sector. There has been an exponential growth in brands that present themselves on the market as “green” or “sustainable”.
When we speak about sustainability, we are talking about something much broader than the preservation of the environment.
In 2015, the United Nations launched an agenda with 17 goals for sustainable development that it hopes to attain by the end of 2030. This agenda seeks to create a global model of development for societies that helps eliminate poverty and hunger; promote the prosperity and well-being of everyone – access to health care and education, for example; protect the environment; and fight against climate change.
Simply put, these 17 goals are based on three fundamental points of development: economic, social and environmental development.
More and more companies are intending to follow a more ecological route, both in the product they offer, their production and operation.
The hotel industry is no different. In some cases, these matters began to come to the fore due to the change in the profile of the behavior of customers; however, nowadays, the identity of the hotel is fundamental when it comes to choose an accommodation, and many people look for a place that cares about the environment – many hotel chains, from the outset, included, in their matrix, measures to reduce their environmental footprint.
So, we have seen, in recent years, the creation of “green” departments or projects in each hotel, the main purpose of which is to deal with the environmental impact associated with the hotel’s activity, and their assignment being the implementation of a series of measures that, taken together, have a positive impact on the environment.