The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) has unveiled Responsible Stay, an industry-wide initiative to improve the social and environmental responsibility of meetings, events, and guest experiences in American hotels.
In four crucial areas, Responsible Stay prioritizes hotels’ environmental sustainability efforts:
- Increasing energy efficiency by making operational changes and using sustainable energy technologies
- Reducing waste through funding initiatives and developing fresh, creative ways to cut, reuse, and recycle waste across all properties
- Conserving water by reducing water usage in critical areas such as laundry, food preparation, and gardening.
- Using ethical sourcing methods and putting sustainability first in supply chains to reduce adverse effects on the environment and society.
By concentrating on these four guiding principles, AHLA and its members are committed to enhancing environmental initiatives, education, and resources to provide visitors with a “responsible stay,” safeguard the planet’s future and assist communities across the country.
“The hotel industry has shown a longstanding commitment to sustainability, and many of our member companies have been on the leading edge of these efforts. We’re thrilled that the industry is committed to this critical issue that will shape how we travel for years to come,” said Chip Rogers, president and CEO of AHLA. “The launch of Responsible Stay is the next step of our industry’s sustainability journey, and we are uniting as an industry to provide a responsible stay for our employees, guests, communities and our planet.”
By assisting hotels in changing their operations to be more sustainable, Responsible Stay hopes to boost environmental activities. This dedication to providing a “responsible stay” expands on current efforts by AHLA to promote commercial initiatives to reduce waste, water and energy use, carbon emissions, and more, including:
- The AHLA Sustainability Committee made up of business executives, promotes environmental sustainability and resilience via communication, education, and advocacy on behalf of the lodging sector;
- The Sustainable Hospitality Alliance and AHLA have formed a new relationship to promote, coordinate, and support hospitality sustainability initiatives;
- AHLA’s longstanding partnership with the World Wildlife Fund and the Hotel Kitchen program, which uses innovative strategies to engage staff, partners and guests in curbing food waste from hotel kitchens;
- AHLA’s ongoing partnership with the Department of Energy Better Buildings Initiative highlights energy efficiency and drives leadership in energy innovation in the hospitality sector by accelerating investment and sharing successful best practices;
- AHLA’s newly-formed research initiative with GreenView helps quantify and benchmark sustainability practices across the hotel industry in the United States, allowing for better insights, best-practice development and sustainability progress tracking over time.
With members, state association partners, and other industry stakeholders backing the program and its guiding principles, Responsible Stay has received widespread industry support. The Responsible Stay website has a complete list of supporters here.
Various organizations in the hotel and lodging sector have also published declarations of support for the Responsible Stay initiative. In addition, major hotel corporations have pledged individually to enhance environmental sustainability on their sites to celebrate the launch of Responsible Stay.
Pat Pacious, CEO, Choice Hotels International:
“Choice Hotels International, Inc. is committed to reducing our carbon footprint and proudly supports AHLA’s ‘Responsible Stay’ and its focus on water conservation, waste reduction, responsible sourcing and energy efficiency. More than a decade ago, Choice launched Room to be Green®, a program that promotes environmentally friendly practices throughout our hotel system and corporate offices. As the program continues to evolve and we look to further enhance our commitment to sustainability, we’re excited about the launch of ‘Responsible Stay.’”
Caitrin O’Brien; Vice President, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG); Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts:
“Four Seasons is committed to building upon our company’s strong history of supporting our communities and the environment. Through our Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) program, we seek to preserve and regenerate the beautiful places in which we operate and leave a positive, enduring impact on our communities. We are proud to support ‘Responsible Stay’ and its focus on water conservation, waste reduction, responsible sourcing and energy efficiency. Our hotels around the world are taking significant steps within each of these priority areas, and we are committed to continued collaboration with our industry peers to drive even greater collective impact.”
Danny Hughes, Executive Vice President and President, Americas, Hilton:
“For over 100 years, Hilton has operated under the belief that hospitality can be a powerful force for good. We recognize that there has never been a more important time to support our industry’s efforts towards a more resilient and vibrant world for travel and are proud to support AHLA’s ‘Responsible Stay’ priorities. Together with our industry partners and guided by our Travel With Purpose strategy, we look forward to strengthening our collective efforts to protect the communities and destinations we serve while creating a more responsible stay for our guests.”
Mark Hoplamazian, President and CEO, Hyatt:
“Hyatt is committed to advancing environmental action through our 2030 environmental goals as part of our World of Care ESG platform. We are proud to support ‘AHLA’s Responsible Stay’ as an important tool in our industry’s sustainability efforts and help to ensure the communities we all serve remain vibrant now, and in the future.”
Catherine Dolton, Chief Sustainability Officer, IHG Hotels & Resorts:
“At IHG Hotel & Resorts, we recognize the importance of playing our part in protecting our planet for the future. We fully support ‘Responsible Stay’ and agree with its priorities of water conservation, waste reduction, energy efficiency and responsible sourcing. In parallel, IHG is committed to providing our guests with a more sustainable stay through our ‘Journey to Tomorrow’ 10-year responsible business plan. That’s why we’re working to reduce our energy use and carbon emissions in line with climate science and to minimize waste in the hospitality industry. We’re also finding ways to reduce our water usage and work with others towards sustainable solutions that create water access for all.”
Liam Brown; Group President, U.S. and Canada; Marriott International, Inc.:
“At Marriott International, Inc., we believe we have a global responsibility and unique opportunity to be a force for good by helping to take on our world’s most pressing social, environmental and economic issues. We support ‘Responsible Stay’ and its four key pillars of energy efficiency, water conservation, waste reduction and responsible sourcing. This new resource will help us advance our industry’s commitment to sustainability – protecting our communities and environments while meeting the expectations of our guests, associates, owners, investors and other stakeholders. Guided by our 2025 Sustainability and Social Impact Goals, as well as the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Marriott International is committed to creating positive and sustainable impact wherever we do business.
Geoff Ballotti, President and CEO, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts:
“Wyndham supports AHLA’s ‘Responsible Stay’ and is committed to fostering social responsibility through conservation, waste reduction, energy efficiency and responsible sourcing. We take daily action to minimize our operations’ impact on the world as we continue making progress in reducing our carbon emissions and water consumption and work towards a 100% elimination of single-use plastics while providing our hotels access to tools and best practices through Wyndham Green to help measure and reduce their own environmental impact.”
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