Siemens will be the first global company to introduce a mandatory Green Stay Initiative (GSI) policy and request that hotels provide data about their environmental impact. Together with the international service company HRS, Siemens developed global, traceable, and standardized criteria by which the carbon footprint of each individual hotel can be tracked and compared with others. So far, there has not been a global standard for using traceable criteria to compare hotel sustainability.
In the future, hotel providers will submit information via the Green Stay Initiative on aspects such as energy consumption, water consumption and waste per occupied room night. This information will then serve as the basis for calculating the carbon footprint. The calculation process involves providing environmental data based on recognized standards such as the Greenhouse Gas Protocol and ISO. Sustainable hotels are then highlighted and suggested to employees in the company’s internal business-travel booking tool.
To set a new market standard, the Green Stay Initiative has been designed as an open-source tool for enabling other companies to travel more sustainably as well. Siemens, which accounted for more than two million room nights annually before the pandemic, sees GSI as an essential driver for achieving its sustainability targets. More than half of Siemens’ supplier hotels have already provided their data.
“The HRS Green Stay Initiative provides us with a uniform global standard for measuring and comparing hotels’ environmental footprints,” said Thorsten Eicke, Head of Global Mobility Services at Siemens AG. “By implementing this initiative, we can finally close a gap because, for our other suppliers, we already had a comparable standard thanks to our Carbon Web Assessment (CWA). We can now steer our hotel volume to support our ambitions for going green. This is a proven technology, and it’s clearly time to use these capabilities to serve our near-term and long-term sustainability goals.”
Starting next year, Siemens will select its preferred supplier hotels according to sustainability criteria that GSI has defined. As a result, hotels will be asked to provide data for their individual properties on an annual basis. Up to 80 Green Stay Initiative criteria are used to measure CO2 emissions and evaluate performance in sustainability policy, energy management, and biodiversity. These criteria consider the hotels’ amenities, such as pools, air conditioning and spa areas, as well as further influences, such as resource efficiency, recycling, shuttle services and restaurants. Siemens will adjust the criteria based on its own sustainability framework and on the standards for carbon footprints in individual countries. By prioritizing suppliers that fulfill recognized sustainability criteria, Siemens aims to encourage more hotels to reduce their carbon emissions.
Siemens collaborates globally with HRS on a broad range of hotel program management functions, including procurement, rate auditing, booking, payment and management of meetings. Recognizing that many hotels have limited resources in the wake of the pandemic, HRS’ and Siemens’ sustainability experts purposefully designed the Green Stay Initiative to make it easy for hotels to submit their data and comply with verifiable corporate reporting standards on environmental, social and governance topics. Demonstrating noteworthy traction, more than 300 hotel chains and thousands of properties across 130 countries are currently participating in HRS’ Green Stay Initiative, less than 18 months after HRS introduced the award-winning technology to corporate lodging buyers and suppliers worldwide.
“We’ve noted that a number of our Fortune 500 clients have begun making definitive requests regarding sustainability-related metrics in their initial hotel request for proposals for 2023. That said, given their pioneering history, I’m not surprised in the least to see Siemens taking the lead with this public pronouncement,” said HRS CEO Tobias Ragge. “Sustainability is increasingly becoming the force driving corporate strategy. That’s why HRS has pledged to continue investing in sustainable technologies that will expedite the arrival of net-zero corporate lodging programs, all while helping the travel industry reach carbon neutrality years in advance of the 2050 goal outlined in the Paris Agreement.”