WEST PALM BEACH, FLA.—HotelPlanner and Meetings.com, the leading online sites for booking group travel and meetings worldwide, announced that they are partnering with Greenview to advance their corporate responsibility and sustainability efforts. The partnership directly supports a program to protect and restore rainforests in Indonesia, allowing travelers and meeting planners to choose a green meeting option through the platforms at no additional cost. These curated venues have eliminated bottled water and other single-use plastic, offer local and vegetarian menu options and have energy-efficient lighting and power settings, among other benefits. The program will launch in 2020.
With offices in New York and Singapore, Greenview consults and advises hospitality organizations on their corporate responsibility and sustainability platforms to drive profitability, streamline data management and stay ahead of the latest environmental trends. By leveraging the power of data, common guidelines, best practices and innovation, Greenview helps companies effectively communicate their progress to key stakeholders.
Through the platforms’ Preferred Membership option—a hotel marketing program that maximizes group leads and sales for partners—partner hotels can opt to earn a “green” distinction by committing to best practices for plastic reduction, waste reduction, energy efficiency and responsible sourcing.
Goal is to Help Meeting Planners Make Educated Decisions
The recent Green Lodging Trends Report showed that 46 percent of hotels in Asia have eliminated single-use plastics and 84 percent also have food waste prevention strategies (e.g. adjustment of portion size, redesigning of menus, etc.) in place to reduce food waste. Fifty-eight percent of hotels in Asia have also started offering green meeting options such as offering a water filtration/hydration station system instead of plastic bottled water. Key to the program will be a clear definition of the actions taken by hotels so that travelers and meeting planners can make an educated decision when selecting their venue.
“When our offices expanded to Singapore, the severe haze issue brought environmental concerns to the forefront for our company. We wanted to take immediate action to help protect the health of the travel industry in Southeast Asia and humanity at large. Research shows that most guests want green meeting options but have been unable to find meaningful ones. We want it to be clear for those who book on our sites, by assuring them that their hotel stay and meeting will help fight climate change,” said Tim Hentschel, Co-founder and CEO of HotelPlanner and Co-founder of Meetings.com.
HotelPlanner and Meetings.com will offset the greenhouse gas emissions from all room nights and venue use by funding a program to protect and restore rainforests in Indonesia. Greenview will use its industry expertise in carbon calculation to equate the footprint of each meeting to financial support for conservation efforts on the ground, which protect endangered species and prevent forest fires.
Cornell Hotel Sustainability Benchmarking
Emissions will be calculated using the Cornell Hotel Sustainability Benchmarking (CHSB) index, a global data set that measures the carbon footprint of meetings and hotel stays across 20 hotel companies including, IHG, Marriott, Hilton, and Hyatt.
“Most hotels are already tackling issues of plastic use, waste and energy efficiency. We know that guests care about the environment more than ever now,” said Eric Ricaurte, Founder and CEO of Greenview. “Climate change is our number one global issue, and by bringing together the right partners at scale, we can contribute in a meaningful and credible way. The program with HotelPlanner and Meetings.com catalyzes these efforts.”
While the Indonesian conservation project will be specific to Southeast Asia, the program will be offered by default for all bookings with Preferred Members of HotelPlanner and Meetings.com.
“By investing in tropical forest restoration, the private sector can support conservation work to prevent fires on peatlands and reduce haze in Singapore,” said Jeffrey Chatellier, Managing Director of Forest Carbon, the implementing partner in Indonesia. “Efforts to protect and restore Indonesia’s peatlands actively prevent the release of harmful greenhouse gas emissions and protect endangered species, such as the Sumatran Tiger.”