Hotel group Accor has announced plans to reduce its worldwide CO2 emissions by 10% by 2015, even as the company continues with its plans to grow by around 40,000 rooms each year.
Those were the proposals laid out in its new sustainability programme, Planet 21, launched this morning.
Targets for Accor's 4,400 hotels in 90 countries, to be met by 2015 include:
â- A 15% cut in water consumption across the same hotels
â- Training in disease prevention for at least 95% of employees
â- The use of eco-label products in at least 85% of hotels
â- The promotion of healthier meals on menus in at least 80% of hotels
â- The removal of endangered seafood species from all menus
Denis Hennequin, chairman and chief executive officer of Accor, said: "Accor has a strategy of expansion and intends to become the undisputed leader in the global hotel industry, but we are reaffirming our commitment to achieving growth only in a responsible manner.
"With the Planet 21 programme we are putting sustainability at the core of our business strategy, and social responsibility at the heart of our development and innovation. I am convinced that Planet 21 will prove to be a powerful driver of competitiveness for our brands, increasing our appeal among our customers and partners and improving loyalty among our employees."
The name Planet 21 was chosen to echo Agenda 21, an international sustainability accord signed in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
The Accor Group established an environment department in 1994, and has since adopted several sustainability measures including:
â- 93% of hotels monitor water use and 88% employ flow regulators in showers and taps
â- 91% of hotels sort and recycle harmful waste batteries and fluorescent lamps
â- 68% of hotels use eco-label products for cleaning and decoration
â- 62% of hotels offer balanced dishes on their menus
Sophie Flak, executive vice-president for Sustainable Development and Academies at Accor, said: "Today, 70% of our major-account customers include sustainability among their criteria for appointing suppliers, and half of our customers apply this policy when choosing hotels. That is one reason why we believe it is important and appropriate to involve our customers in Planet 21. We each have a responsibility to improve our activities, but by working together we can achieve more for ourselves, for society and for the environment."
By Neil Gerrard
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