IHG reduces water and carbon ‘per occupied hotel room’

Global hotel franchise InterContinental Hotel Group (IHG) reduced its carbon footprint and water consumption per occupied room in 2013, largely due to more hotels signing up to the company's online 'green' engagement system.

The company reported a 2.4% reduction in carbon emissions per occupied room between 2012 and 2013, while water use per occupied room in water-stressed areas decreased by 4.6% over the year.

According to the company’s 2013 sustainability report, reductions were achieved through a combination of efficiency measures throughout its estate and more franchise hotels signing up to its Green Engage online system, which tracks the use of energy, carbon and water and the management of waste.

Currently, a total of 2,646 hotels, more than 50% of its estate, are enrolled in IHG Green Engage and more than 16,000 ‘green solutions’ were implemented during 2013.

Making up most of the company’s carbon footprint, energy consumption was reduced by almost 12% per available room night in its owned and managed hotels between 2010 and 2012.

IHG CEO Richard Solomons said: “Building on the success of reducing energy use in our owned and managed estate by 11.7% from 2010-2012, we have now agreed a new set of 2013-2017 targets.

“Our five year target is to reduce our carbon footprint per occupied room by 12%. From 2013-2017, we have also set a target to reduce water use per occupied room in water-stressed areas by 12%”.

Looking at the company’s wider carbon footprint, the 2013 report covered the carbon intensity of 1,372 hotels out of IHG’s total global estate of 4,697 hotels.

It showed that despite the carbon reduction per room, IHG’s total carbon footprint actually increased by 2% in 2013. This was due to an 11% carbon emissions increase from the company’s franchise estate, which offset the 8% carbon reduction throughout its owned and managed hotels.

Like carbon, the company’s overall water consumption increased despite a fall per occupied room. Total water consumption across its global estate increased by almost 2%.

Leigh Stringer

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