SINGAPORE—In commemoration of Earth Day, Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts announced a pledge against single-use plastic. This is in support of the Earth Day 2018 theme End Plastic Pollution and directly addresses the detrimental effect that plastic is having on the environment and marine life. With this declaration, the premium hotel operator and developer will implement a plan for all its properties to phase out the use of disposable plastics by Earth Day 2019. This will include plastic straws, plastic water bottles and disposable plastic cutlery.
Since its inception in 1994, Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts has embarked on a journey of stewardship and honored its commitment towards the environment and communities through its philosophy of “Embracing the Environment, Empowering People”. This announcement marks the next step in its commitment as a sustainable tourism brand. Dr Steve Newman, the Group Sustainability Director, says: “The durability of plastic led to its global success and also its role now as a global threat to environmental and human health. As a company founded on a core ethos of environmental preservation and restoration, Banyan Tree is committed to eliminate single-use plastic. We must do more than clean up waste, we must reduce plastic use and dispose of a throwaway mind-set, for the good of the planet and our future.”
As the impact of climate change becomes increasingly evident, the group plans to intensify its sustainability efforts in 2018, in a bid to further its mission as a socially responsible business. Other than the organization’s annual celebration of World Environment Day and World Food Day with its respective Greening Communities Together (June 2018) and Feeding Communities Together (October 2018) programs, it also marked the Earth Hour event earlier this year with resounding success. In total, 37 out of 43 Banyan Tree properties across 12 countries participated (along with 12,682 guests and associates) in the global movement to raise awareness on the importance of climate action. The international effort saw a total saving of 2970.97kWh of energy, which is approximately the global average of the annual household energy consumption. In addition, Banyan Tree will also be introducing signature Sustainable Itineraries across its properties for the environmental-conscious travellers. The Sustainable Itineraries will be launched later this year.
These upcoming initiatives follow a positive 2017 when Banyan Tree supported the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, as declared by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation. The award-winning hospitality leader took the opportunity to align its environmental and social contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals for Sustainable Development. All 17 SDGs were directly or indirectly addressed through Banyan Tree’s efforts on seven key areas: climate change, pollution and waste, biodiversity, ethical compliance and corruption, data security, employee satisfaction and leadership. Some of the company’s achievements in the past year include 15,142 planted trees, 32,889 kilograms of trash collected and the support of 100 youths through its Seedlings mentorship program.
For more information on Banyan Tree’s sustainability ethos and how it serves as a steward of positive change, visit www.banyantreeglobalfoundation.com.