Accor's NZ hotels to roll out PLANET 21

Accor has launched PLANET 21, a comprehensive sustainable development programme involving environmental, social and community support.

Accor is making 21 commitments and the same number of goals for 2015 including: a 15% reduction in water consumption, a 10% decrease in energy use and 85% use of eco-labelled products. The  name PLANET 21 is a direct reference to Agenda 21, the environmental action plan signed by 173 heads of state at the 1992 Rio Earth Summit,

The first Planet 21 accredited hotel in New Zealand is Novotel Auckland Airport. The hotel was selected because:

  • All printed hotel collateral is not only on sustainable paper it uses vegetable based ink
  • 20% of chemicals used at the hotel are eco-labeled and this will move to 50% by the end of the year
  • Planet 21 Rooms at the Novotel have a native NZ plant which sits is a pot made from recycled tyres
  • Hot water energy consumption has been significantly reduced by implementing a heat exchange from the chiller operation to pre-heat the hotel’s hot water system
  • Fair Trade Coffee is served, with used-coffee beans bagged and given to staff/guests to use as garden fertiliser
  • Healthy meals have been created in conjunction with Heart Foundation guidelines
  • The Novotel has a target of recycling 75% of waste, with initiatives including recycling of all  cooking oil, food waste, paper, glass, plastic, batteries, light globes and printer cartridges.
  • Accor’s network of over 30 hotels in New Zealand will be progressively accredited to PLANET 21 status.
  • Since 2002 Accor has donated more than $2.5 million to Cure Kids projects in New Zealand and Fiji to help develop cures for many childhood diseases
  • Accor helps create sustainable employment opportunities for disadvantaged young New Zealanders through the Accor “Building Futures” program, established in conjunction with the Ministry of Social Development. Sixty-six young New Zealanders have completed and received national qualifications, while another 30 are currently undertaking training via the program.
  • Accor New Zealand and Fiji have signed 'The Code' with internationally recognised protection network ECPAT. This strengthens the group’s commitment to combating child sex tourism. The code of conduct is regarded as one of the world’s major tools for enforcing this action
  • In 2011 Accor NZ planted 8266 trees through its Plant for the Planet program. New Zealand guests have been amongst the most enthusiastic recyclers of towels across the Accor network. For every 5 towels re-used, Accor’s hotels contribute to the planting of a tree under the UN’s Billion Tree Program. Such has been the success of Plant for the Planet in NZ that Accor is working with the Department of Conservation to identify a suitable site for reforestation in New Zealand. This will be announced later in the year.

To develop PLANET 21, Accor commissioned two unprecedented international surveys to obtain comprehensive and objective information about its footprint and guest expectations. In 2011, the Group carried out a study of its environmental footprint that enabled it to measure accurately its main impacts, define priorities for action and identify new challenges.

This work was preceded by a survey measuring the expectations of international hotel customers, which showed that sustainable development is a growing selection criterion for both leisure and business customers.  According to this survey, for example, 67% of leisure guests take sustainable development actions into account when choosing a hotel.

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