Whitbread continues slashing emissions and water use
The UK's largest hospitality company has released its 2015 corporate responsibility report, detailing continued progress in water, energy and waste.
In 2014/15, the company delivered a 36% improvement in carbon efficiency and a 30% reduction in water consumption against its 2009 baseline, also diverting 84% of all operational waste from landfill. (Scroll down for full report).
The firm, which owns Costa, Premier Inn and Beefeater, built on the success of its 2014 report, which forced Whitbread to set new sustainability targets after achieving existing goals three years ahead of schedule.
Going forward, the firm is targeting a 15% cut in carbon efficiency and a 20% cut in water consumption by 2020 compared to 2014. A new 2020 recycling target of 80% was also established.
Whitbread chief executive Andy Harrison said: “As we open hundreds of new coffee shops, restaurants and hotels, our challenge is to ensure we manage our energy and environmental impact by reducing carbon emissions, being as energy efficient as possible, minimising water consumption and diverting waste from landfill.
“We’re doing this by investing in new technologies and ways of working, to test and demonstrate higher sustainability standards.”
Successful initiatives over the past year included the launch of the ‘zero energy coffee shop’, and the opening of the UK’s first HGV Liquefied Natural Gas refuelling station.
The station now refills Whitbread’s 16 dual-fuel, natural gas-powered HGVs, which produce up to 20% less CO2 than regular alternatives.
During 2014/15, the firm also became the first UK company to test a fuel cell technology boiler to pre-heat a hotel’s hot water supply, whilst also generating on-site electricity.
According to Whitbread, fuel cells represent the next evolution in Combined Heat and Power (CHP) technology and are almost 96% efficient in reducing the amount of fossil fuel needed to power the heating plant.
This technology runs 24 hours a day at Glastonbury Premier Inn, meeting 20% of the hot water demand, and is expected to save around £17,000 over a 10 year operating period.