LAGUNA BEACH, CALIF.—Soul Community Planet (SCP), the holistic hospitality company founded on the values of wellness, social good and sustainability, announced it has reached several milestones in its efforts to make regenerative travel a reality. These include achieving its company-wide Net Zero Waste goal for 2022, receiving a new EarthCheck benchmark, and launching the new Pristine Playa program on Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula.
SCP Exceeds 2022 Net Zero Waste Goal
In 2022, SCP achieved superior waste efficiency, with an estimated one pound of landfill waste generated per occupied room—less than half of the estimated industry average. Over the same period, SCP’s regenerative programs have resulted in an estimated 2.5 pounds of waste recovery and carbon sequestration per occupied room. As a result, SCP estimates it achieved net negative waste of approximately 1.5 pounds per occupied room company-wide in 2022.
“We’ve made solid progress toward our goal of making regenerative travel a reality for our guests. After a lot of detailed, hard, yucky work—for example, sorting and weighing our trash production—we learned a lot about how to improve our waste efficiency. Thanks to the SCP team’s focus and hard work, all our hotels have implemented measured reduce, reuse, recycle programs. Accounting for offsets, such as carbon sequestered by the trees and kelp we plant, and ocean waste we recover through programs like Pristine Makai in Hawaii—and now Pristine Playa in Costa Rica—we are currently exceeding our Net Zero Waste objective,” said Soul Community Planet Founder & CEO Ken Cruse. “That said, our ultimate goal is to achieve virtually zero solid waste per guest stay independent of carbon and waste-recovery offsets. This is a lofty but attainable goal, as most solid waste generated by hotels is unnecessary food waste and packaging.”
SCP Redmond Achieves EarthCheck Recognition
SCP also announced that SCP Redmond Hotel has achieved Bronze Benchmarked recognition through EarthCheck, a leading business advisory group specializing in sustainability and destination management for the travel and tourism industry. The SCP Redmond is the first property in Oregon to be benchmarked by EarthCheck and the second SCP Hotel to receive this recognition. EarthCheck has identified both the SCP Redmond and the SCP Hilo as regional leaders in energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions and community contributions.
“Travelers wish to have a positive impact on the places they visit. EarthCheck helps ensure we’re implementing proven sustainability, efficiency, and social programs with a high degree of accountability. We are proud of our relationship with EarthCheck as they hold us accountable to a very high standard. This relationship reflects our solid commitment to being a leader in regenerative travel,” said Cruse.
SCP Hotels’ EarthCheck certification is done in two phases including benchmarking—the quantitative evaluation of a property’s environmental and social performance, and then certification—the verification of those standards by an approved independent third party EarthCheck Auditor. While the full process can often take many months, SCP Redmond and SCP Hilo are expected to achieve Silver Certified status in 2023.
In addition to SCP Redmond and Hilo, all other SCP properties undergoing the process to become EarthCheck certified include Salishan Coastal Lodge in Gleneden Beach, Ore.; and newly acquired properties in Laguna Beach (SCP Laguna Beach and SCP Seven4One), SCP Mendocino Inn and Farm, and the company’s first international property, SCP Corcovado Wilderness Lodge in Costa Rica.
SCP Launches Pristine Playa Program
SCP Corcovado Wilderness Lodge’s new Pristine Playa program, conducted in partnership with Fundación Corcovado and modeled after SCP Hilo’s successful Pristine Makai program on Hawaii’s Big Island, will help keep the adjacent Corcovado National Park natural, beautiful and free of ocean waste. The Pristine Playa program, which will be part of SCP’s Every Stay Does Good program, is expected to recover more ocean waste from the shores of Corcovado National Park than will be generated by the already waste-efficient SCP Corcovado Wilderness Lodge. Moreover, the program will provide income for residents of the economically challenged Osa community.
“The first time we visited Corcovado National Park we were struck by the intensity of its flora and fauna and its spectacular natural coastline. Sadly, we were also struck by the amount of ocean waste (mostly from foreign fishing vessels) that had washed up on its shores,” said Cruse. “Unfortunately, Corcovado National Park—which houses 3 percent of the world’s biodiversity, and which the National Geographic Society defined as the most biologically intense place in the world—simply lacks the resources to conduct regular waste cleanups. Through the Pristine Playa program, every guest visit to the SCP Corcovado Wilderness Lodge will help fund our efforts to concurrently address two critical issues by providing much needed income for residents of the economically challenged Osa Peninsula, and by helping to keep Corcovado National Park free of ocean waste. As a result, the new Pristine Playa program will be a very solid step toward making travel to the SCP Corcovado Wilderness Lodge truly regenerative.”
SCP announced its commitment to achieving Net Zero Waste in 2022 and has since continually added sustainability and regenerative travel programs to help travelers leave the places they visit better off than they were before.