Whitbread’s ‘robust approach’ to water efficiency recognised by Carbon Trust

Premier Inn and Costa parent company, Whitbread, has achieved the Carbon Trust Water Standard for demonstrating a "robust approach" to water measurement and management, and achieving year-on-year reductions in use.

The latest of eight companies to receive the standard, Whitbread is also the first in the hospitality industry and puts the achievement down to its corporate responsibility strategy, ‘Good Together’, which includes targets on energy, carbon, water and staff engagement.

The programme aims to ensure that Whitbread’s commitment to delivering water savings and promoting water conservation leads to real results and this has enabled the company to achieve a 9% reduction over the certification period.

After achieving its original target of 15% savings four years early, the company increased the target. The company is now targeting a 25% reduction in water use by 2017, from a 2009 baseline, across its hotel and restaurant estate.

Water saving and conservation helps to decrease water costs across the business, saving valuable water resources and cutting carbon emissions associated with water demand, particularly through heating and treatment.

Whitbread’s energy and environment manager Chris George said: “As water becomes more precious it is essential that hospitality businesses of all sizes use it more efficiently. By achieving the Carbon Trust Standard we have demonstrated that simple changes can make a huge difference.

“By installing water saving technologies across our hotels and restaurants, and educating team members and customers on the importance of water saving water where we can, we have saved thousands of litres of water – equivalent to 180 Olympic swimming pools – and made our business more efficient. It’s rewarding to have our achievements recognised by the Carbon Trust and I hope the industry follows in our footsteps,” her added.

To achieve its targets Whitbread installed a variety of water saving technologies across its hotels and restaurants estate, including the replacement of all shower heads in Premier Inn hotels with aerated low-flow versions.

It also introduced low flush toilet cisterns and taps across its hotel and restaurant estate as well as grey water and rainwater recycling technologies in new developments.

In addition, Whitbread invested in real time water metering technology to model water consumption at individual sites and identify leaks early.

Read more from Whitbread’s energy and environment manager Chris George here

Leigh Stringer

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