Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide has reduced energy use by 12.08 percent, carbon emissions by 16.07 percent and water use by 17.26 percent across all owned, managed and franchised properties from 2008 through 2014. The reductions stem from Starwood’s 30/20 by 20 environmental goals, launched in 2009, to cut energy use by 30 percent and water use by 20 percent by 2020 globally. In 2013, Starwood added a goal to reduce carbon emissions by 30 percent during the same time frame.
“We’re pleased with the progress and are encouraged by the reductions we made while maintaining an aggressive global growth strategy,” said Ken Siegel, chief administrative officer, general counsel and head of global citizenship at Starwood. “Our 30/20 by 20 goals challenge us to create short- and long-term programs and partnerships that protect the environment, reduce operating costs, enhance the guest experience and make sustainable upgrades possible for properties.”
Starwood has made reductions by working together with its properties, using low-cost, foundational initiatives such as installing high-efficiency LED lighting and low-flow fixtures and faucets as well as capital improvements including enhancing or replacing mechanical systems. In most properties, foundational initiatives account for approximately one-third of the progress towards 30/20 by 20 goals and are projected to save US$1 billion across the portfolio in less than 10 years. Capital improvements and partnerships that bring innovative, renewable, and efficient technologies like solar, help shore up the remaining reductions to-date.
The Sheraton Santa Fe in Mexico City is one hotel leading the charge. The property cut energy use by 26.1 percent, carbon emissions by 35.61 percent and water consumption by 39.33 percent since 2008 by installing LED lighting, motion sensors and low-flow faucets, recycling soapy water and using rainwater collection. It also undertook larger projects including re-engineering water heaters and installing control systems, said Germán Angeles, property director of engineering and security, and local sustainability champion. He used Starwood’s internal reporting system to measure and track consumption in order to make decisions about the hotel’s specific needs. The next project is replacing the chillers.
“We had great savings in energy and water and that’s helping our finances and driving business. The investments we’ve made help our top-line growth as more companies request information about our sustainable meeting practices before signing contracts,” he said. “Associates are looking at recycling, and saving water and energy differently. They are taking pride in their ability to protect the environment while still delivering an enhanced guest experience.”