The tourism body has announced a verification scheme for the travel and tourism sector
The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) has launched the Hotel Sustainability Basics initiative, referred to as Basics.
Announced at ITB Berlin, Basics will enable tourist accommodation providers from around the world to begin their sustainability journey with a globally recognised set of criteria that all hotels should implement as a minimum to drive responsible and sustainable travel and tourism.
Made up of 12 key criteria, Basics is accessible to all hotels and serves as a stepping-stone to more complex sustainability schemes.
In order to ensure the validity of the programme, WTTC partnered with Green Key and SGS to develop a simple online verification system to allow hotels to provide evidence of their data and ensure they are following the Basics.
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The verification scheme enables hotels and other tourist accommodations to be officially verified for meeting eight of the 12 criteria in the first year and demonstrate their commitment to working toward all 12 of the criteria by year three.
Six international hotel groups including Accor, Jin Jiang International, Louvre Hotels Group, Meliá Hotels International, Meininger and Radisson Hotel Group have now joined Basics as inaugural partners.
WTTC president & CEO Julia Simpson said: "We are incredibly proud to launch our Hotel Sustainability Basics and its verification scheme. The initiative is a response to the sector's need for a baseline for hotels and other tourist lodgings to introduce the exacting sustainability standards.
"Our research shows that most business owners are aware of their responsibility to the environment but need a step-by-step guide that is scientifically verifiable. It is a testament to the need for such a scheme that already thousands of hotel properties from around the world have committed to implement Basics, and from today can begin the verification process."
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Inge Huijbrechts, global senior vice president of Sustainability, Security & Corporate Communications at Radisson Hotel Group added: "Hotel Sustainability Basics is filling a new and unanswered demand in the hotel industry: to provide a solid, trusted and clear label for essential hotel sustainability. It's important we define responsible travel to preserve the planet and protect communities. With Hotel Sustainability Basics we offer the traveller a clear sustainable stay option for all types of hotels around the world.
"Radisson Hotel Group commits to implement Hotel Sustainability Basics in all its 1,100 hotels by 2025. We do this together with our shareholder Jin Jiang International, their affiliate Louvre Hotel Group and other major hotel groups and destinations around the world."
The WTTC has also collaborated with other key leading sector figures including representatives from Greenview, WTTC's hotel members, Expedia, the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), Sustainable Hospitality Alliance and Trip.com Group, as well as the certification bodies SGS and Green Key.
For more information, visit www.action.wttc.org/hotel-sustainability-basics