Hotels in China must be more sustainable, says Cornell report

Cornell school hotel administration2

A report comparing hotels’ environmental footprints has found that China’s hospitality sector urgently needs to address its sustainability, writes Green Hotelier.

China is in the middle of the world’s largest programme of new hotel construction. Despite a marginally slowing growth rate, the country’s hotel development continues at a pace that would see at least three new 150+ room hotels open every day for the next 25 years. It’s estimated China currently has 2.7 million hotel rooms but that number is expected to grow to 9.1 million by 2039.

A new report from Cornell University’s Center for Hospitality Research has compared benchmarking data to extrapolate the high and low quartiles of Chinese benchmarks and applied them to hotels in development pipelines. The results have revealed the startling divide between the existing environmental footprint of hotels in China, and what they could be achieving with a more responsible and sustainable development plan. If hotels continue development at the current rate without implementing sustainability measures, the results could be environmentally devastating.

The report Environmental Implications of Hotel Growth in China: Integrating Sustainability with Hotel Development by Gert Noordzy, Eric Ricaurte, Georgette James, and Meng Wu, highlights the urgent need for hotels in China to build sustainability in at the development stage, something the Chinese government is keen to see happen.

The authors note, “China’s hotel growth carries substantial consequences in terms of increases in energy and water consumption, and an expanding carbon footprint and we urge hotel developers to heed the national government’s push for greater sustainability. The key is to include sustainability in hotel planning and design from a project’s outset.”

The report states, “China’s hotels consume more water and energy per square metre and per occupied room than those in other large countries. A comparative study of business hotels in Asia Pacific illustrating water use disparities reveals the scale of the problem. Hotel rooms in the United States consume on average 627 litres per occupied room, compared to 1,555 litres per occupied room in China.

This is an excerpt from an article first published by Green Hotelier. Read the original article here: Hotels in China must be more sustainable, says report | Green Hotelier

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