By Mr. Rajneesh Malhotra, VP – Operations and Asset Management
Sustainability has been one of the most noticeable hospitality trends of recent times, with a growing number of businesses promoting eco-friendly initiatives. Environment sustainability in the hospitality industry has evolved over the last few years with hotel chains taking into cognizance the fact that the industry plays a pivotal role in protecting the earth’s resources. In addition to this, consumers in general have become more conscious of their habits by choosing sustainable experiences over conventional ones. While the hospitality industry accounts for large amounts of energy consumption, in recent times smart technology and effective policies have helped control the impact on the environment.
In the ever evolving landscape of hospitality industry, cost of utility and energy consumption while also considering environmental impact, is a matter of concern, making it imperative that Hoteliers today take proactive measures to evaluate energy consumption patterns. At the same time, it is also important to implement a robust set of practices to ensure our hotels are energy efficient without compromising on customer experience.
Among the various factors that contribute towards energy consumption the larger share comes from – air-conditioning (45 to 50%) followed by lighting (14 to 18%) and the rest by kitchen equipment, plumbing equipment, refrigeration and elevators. To reduce and control energy consumption, let us consider the following essential factors:
To optimize the energy used for cooling, hotels need to be equipped with omni sensors that automatically detect occupancy and recalibrate temperatures in the respective guest Rooms. This helps saving load and results in lighter electricity bills. Apart from this, hotel premises must also be installed with Pressure Independent Balance Control Valve (PIBCV) for Fan Coil as well as Air handling Units to provide initiate further savings.
At our HVAC plant rooms at Chalet Hotels, we have incorporated additional measures like high efficiency chillers, Inline pumps and low approach cooling towers with Variable frequency drives with plant room optimizer for lower energy consumption. As a result consumption of HVAC plant room reduces by more than to 15 to 18%.
Controlling non-essential lighting consumption is a must when you are trying to optimize cost. Hotels need to adapt to efficient lighting systems with LEDs instead of incandescent or CFL lighting. Additionally, hotels need to focus on deploying technology and motion sensors to minimize energy consumption in various areas of the hotel. At Chalet Hotels, censor-based lighting tools enable in delivering significant energy savings while also ensuring quality of service and comfort for the guests. Smart controls in rooms are environment-friendly tools and save energy by 15-20%.
Kitchen equipment, plumbing equipment, refrigeration and elevators: With the use of smart technology, energy-saving devices are able to perform several actions that lead to energy efficiency. For instance, walk-in and deep-freezers use smart technology to read and adjust temperatures according to the food stored in them. This reduces the load on the compressor and leads to lesser power consumption. Furthermore, hotels can implement Preventive Maintenance Schedule for refrigeration systems that are monitored online to avoid any mishaps.
Besides the factors stated above, it has become imperative for hoteliers to invest in modern infrastructure like green roofs and energy efficient windows. Energy efficient windows (Double glazed triple windows) reduce noise levels inside the room and solar radiation. Apart from ensuring overall energy efficiency, these tools help streamline operations, enhance employees’ productivity and provide improved guest experience. There are a number of improving energy efficiency opportunities in hotels today and IoT (Internet of Things) based solutions have made these simple and affordable. While introducing newer technologies to minimize energy consumption is imperative it is equally important to onboard all stakeholders including employees and guests.
Hence we train and sensitize our staff on the need to conserve energy and the importance of working towards a sustainable future. Finally, we ensure that our guests are made aware of various measures the hotel is taking to minimize its carbon footprint and how they can contribute to the effort. Adoption of technology and involvement of all stakeholders has helped Chalet Hotels lead the way in building a sustainable future while driving profitability.