Within most recent times there has been an increase in hotels choosing sustainable options for their operations. These decisions have not only been based on the cost savings that can be derived from sustainable options but also the market demand for them. According to a recent TripAdvisor survey, 62% of travelers in the US, are environmentally-conscious when opting for hotels, transportation, and meals. In the past couple of years alone, the number of guests seeking sustainable hotels has doubled. Booking.com’s ‘Global Sustainable Travel Report’ has deduced that 65% of global travelers prefer to stay in the eco-friendly accommodations. 68% confirm they are more likely to consider hotels and lodging that was considered environmentally friendly while 36% would choose an environmentally friendly hotel based on the desire to have a “local” feel. At the top of the list within recent times and in response to increased climate change consciousness is energy efficiency (EE) and renewable energy (RE).
USAID Caribbean Clean Energy Program (USAID CARCEP) is a five-year program that was developed with the aim of helping the Caribbean region to create an enabling environment that promotes investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency for a brighter, more sustainable future. Through regional partnerships, USAID CARCEP assists beneficiary countries in the Eastern Caribbean and Jamaica in establishing effective policy, legislative and regulatory environments as well as incentives for energy efficiency and low-emission growth in the energy sector. USAID CARCEP also works closely with the private sector to drive investments in clean energy development. The components of this five year project include improving an enabling environment for clean energy development, optimizing variable renewable energy integration and benchmarking energy efficiency in the tourism sector to name a few.
One of the main highlights of the USAID Caribbean Clean Energy Program (USAID CARCEP) program is the online Energy Benchmarking Tool (EBT), a web-based benchmarking tool, designed to help hoteliers understand and adopt energy efficiency measures to reduce their electricity consumption and lower operation costs. The tool is simple enough for hotel owners, chief engineers, cost controllers and environmental managers to utilize. The outputs of the tool are relevant and useful for each hotel owner, and are adaptable to be utilized by every hotel type in the region. Hotel managers can enter their profile information, utility data (electricity, fuel, and water) in order to track utility consumption from the hotel’s largest contributors as well as a breakdown of energy and water usage by area within the hotel based on equipment type.
The web-based Energy Benchmarking Tool enables hotel owners across the Caribbean to compare themselves with similarly operating hotels in their country and across the Caribbean region, and understand ways to save money by implementing Energy Efficiency (EE) measures.
The outputs of the tool are relevant and useful for each hotel owner/ manager. It is adaptable to be utilized by every hotel type in the region (boutique hotels, resorts, hotels with villas, business hotels).Hotel managers can easily enter their utility data (electricity, fuel, and water) and identify energy and water consumption from the hotel’s largest contributors. They can compare those values with utility data over time to create a breakdown of:
1. Energy and water usage by area within the hotel as well as equipment type
2. Energy and water consumption from year to year
3. Energy and water consumption from month to month
Benefits of the tool:
Analytics – The dashboard produces profiles of the energy usage within the hotel, provides a category breakdown by usage and location (e.g., how much energy is being used by air conditioning in the guest rooms vs. in the common areas), and visualizations highlight the energy usage trends over time.
Comparisons among other hotels – The dashboard highlights the hotel’s energy usage compared with similar hotels. This allows the hotel to see how it is performing compared with similar hotels in different countries and by hotel size.
Energy and water efficiency improvement opportunities – The dashboard highlights recommended opportunities for reducing energy and water usage within the hotel, and provides estimates for savings opportunities along with paybacks for each measure.
The recommendations are customized to the hotel based on the hotel user’s inputs into the hotel profile and are low cost options which can be easily implemented. It is the time to activate our climate change readiness plans. For more information on how to register for the Energy Benchmarking Tool, please visit our website at http://www.caribbeanhotelandtourism.com/energy-benchmarking-tool/ . You may also contact our Energy Efficiency Promotions Specialists – John Marccochio at firstname.lastname@example.org or Christine Young at email@example.com