Accor has received a 2010 Tourism for Tomorrow Award from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC). The awards recognize best practices in sustainable tourism around the world.
Beijing, China (June 01, 2010) /ChinaNewswire.com/ — At the 10th Global Travel & Tourism Summit recently held in Beijing, Accor was presented with a Tourism for Tomorrow Award in the Global Tourism Business Award category. This prestigious, highly competitive award acknowledges Accor's accomplishments in demonstrating effective, environmentally sensitive operations and management, educating guests and employees about sustainable tourism practices, supporting cultural and natural heritage preservation, and collaborating with other private and public stakeholders to promote best practices in sustainable tourism.
"For years, WTTC's Tourism for Tomorrow Awards have recognized achievements in responsible and sustainable tourism and profiled best practices that the industry can learn from," said Jean-Claude Baumgarten, President & CEO of the World Travel & Tourism Committee. "Independently judged from hundreds of applications, four awards are presented every year at WTTC's Global Travel & Tourism Summit to organizations that lead the way in helping to secure a sustainable future for travel and tourism around the world."
A Demanding Selection Process
After one round of preliminary judging, 15 Accor hotels of different brands in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Morocco and the Netherlands were assessed by three tourist industry experts. The judges evaluated the depth of Accor's commitment both in terms of social and environmental sustainability initiatives, tested the level of awareness among employees and verified that action plans are widely shared across the Group and adapted to local situations.
"Many global companies focus more on their environmental ambitions when it comes to sustainability, but Accor has surpassed this with a number of environmental and social sustainability initiatives," said Costas Christ, who chaired the panel of judges for the Tourism for Tomorrow Awards. "Its Earth Guest program plays a truly global role in minimizing the environmental impact of Accor's operations. It also helps to share best environmental practices through effective tracking, with data that can be accessed by any hotel at any time. The judges were also very impressed with Accor's strong social outreach, including its willingness to address fundamental global health issues like HIV/AIDS prevention and to lead the fight against illegal exploitation of children for sex in certain tourist destinations."
The Earth Guest Program: A Daily Commitment from All Accor Teams Worldwide
With its rapidly expanding activities, Accor is present in host communities where living standards vary considerably. The Group believes that growth and development should always represent an opportunity and never a danger for people and the environment. Based on that observation, in 2006, Accor formulated about 30 precise objectives to be reached by the end of 2010. Since then, those objectives have guided the Group's actions.
"Accor's development strategy is underpinned by a deep respect for people and the environment," said Gilles C. Pelisson, Accor Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "This respect is expressed through the Earth Guest program launched in 2006 to federate our social and environmental projects around eight priorities. Whether individual actions or large collective projects, all initiatives serve the same purpose – to help make Accor's development a virtuous circle that is respectful of employees, customers, host communities and the planet's natural resources. The 2010 Tourism for Tomorrow Award recognizes our team members' deep commitment to sustainable development around the world."
Some Recent Outcomes of the Earth Guest Program:
Accor hotels serve fair trade products in 17 countries all over the world.
Since 2002, Accor has been involved in a large number of initiatives to eliminate sexual exploitation of children. Accor has signed the "Child Protection Code" created by the UNWTO and the ECPAT NGO in 34 countries which are leading active policies against this affliction. In 2009, 13,000 employees were trained in these countries to prevent this risk and ECPAT campaigns were displayed in the hotels to raise-awareness among our guests.
Accor is committed to combating epidemics through employee-awareness initiatives and results-oriented actions deployed worldwide. In 2007, Accor launched ACT-HIV, a global but locally adaptable approach to help hotel general managers conduct preventive programs against HIV/AIDS for their staff. In 2009, training sessions in disease prevention were held for 15,000 employees, particularly in Africa and Southeast Asia. In Thailand, 80% of employees have received training.
Accor has been a member of the Global Business Coalition to fight against HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis since 2006. The Group has also been a key supporter in the recent launch of the MassiveGood campaign which aims at raising funds against these diseases. The Group also launched a partnership with the Institut Pasteur for health information and prevention aimed at travellers.
Since 2004, a total of 286 ibis hotels have been ISO 14001 certified and in 2007, Novotel embarked on the Green Globe certification program, with 50 hotels accredited at year-end 2009.
Between 2006 and 2009, Accor's energy consumption decreased by 7.8% per available room and water consumption by 4% per occupied room. Moreover, since 1998, Accor has been strongly committed to promoting renewable energies. To date, 99 hotels are equipped with solar panels to produce domestic hot water. Accor is working to improve waste management. Overall, 51% of owned and leased hotels now recycle paper, cardboard and glass.
In 2008, Accor worked with the IUCN, the world leading organization for the protection of biodiversity, to produce a guide for industry professionals, which details how individual hotels can make a real contribution to preserving biodiversity in their local area. For instance, over 850 Accor hotels serve organic products.
In 2008, in partnership with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), Accor launched a new campaign to raise environmental awareness among guests by encouraging them to keep their towels for more than one night. The campaign's slogan is "5 towels reused = 1 tree planted." Half of the savings on hotel laundry costs are donated to seven reforestation projects around the world with the other half going to the hotel for training and incentive initiatives. To date, 1,000 hotels have financed the planting of one million trees worldwide. The goal is to finance the planting of three million trees by year-end 2012.
Accor, a major global group and the European leader in hotels, as well as the global leader in services to corporate clients and public institutions, operates in nearly 100 countries with 150,000 employees. It offers to its clients over 40 years of expertise in two core businesses:
Hotels, with the Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Novotel, Mercure, Suitehotel, Adagio, ibis, all seasons, Etap Hotel, Formule 1, hotelF1 and Motel 6 brands, representing 4,100 hotels and nearly 500,000 rooms in 90 countries, as well as strategically related activities, Thalassa sea & spa, Lenotre, CWL.
Services, with 33 million people in 40 countries benefiting from Accor Services products in employee and constituent benefits, rewards and incentives, and expense management.