Ecological footprint and Earth Overshoot Day
Do you know Earth Overshoot Day? That’s the record day when humans have used more resources than the world provides. From then on we depend on reserves. 2017 Earth Overshoot Day was dated 2nd of August. Over the last decades the usage of resources has increased tremendously, in 1990 Earth Overshoot Day was on 7th of December. It’s obvious that we cannot carry on like this. Let us introduce you to some inspiring Green Pearls® Hotels and their approaches showing it is possible to become climate neutral or even climate positive.
Keeping the carbon emissions in mind
The Inkaterra Group is engaged in the protection of the environment in Peru since its foundation. Together with the University of Leeds and the Rainforest Project the Inkaterra Asociación also conducts the “Carbon Monitoring” Program: four measuring points being installed at the property of the Inkaterra Reserva Amazónica collecting data of carbon fixation in nature. The evaluation shows that the forests of the ITA already absorbed 3 million tons of carbon which makes the Inkaterra Group carbon neutral.
Lowering the carbon footprint: with solar energy…
CGH Earth in India uses solar energy whenever possible. The Spice Village obtains 50 percent of the needed energy from the own photovoltaic plant. At the Coconut Lagoon you will find Asia’s biggest solar boat „Surya“: guests can explore the property with its many streams and rivers by boat with a good conscience as neither noise nor exhaust gases occur.
…using energy from the own power plant…
The Leitlhof in the Dolomites is in favour of renewable energy using wood from the own forest for the wood block-unit power station. Together with a photovoltaic system on the roof and a thoughtful energy concept the Leitlhof is able to meet its needs through renewable energy. Soon guests can charge their electric car for free – with green electricity from the wood-fired power plant.
…and looking ahead.
The Creativhotel Luise in Erlangen follows the principle Cradle-to-Cradle. This means that the focus is on the product life cycle and future reusage right from the beginning. The “renewable hotel rooms” were already built and designed according to this principle. How does it work? For example with a NASA-shower technology saving energy and water, walls made from thatched building slabs and ceilings without formaldehyde glue.
It’s about the combination!
Often times it is not possible to save all carbon emissions. Therefore the Hotel Niedersachsen on Sylt compensates further emissions by donating to the climate protection project “Water preparation in West Kenia”. Additionally the own carbon footprint has been reduced drastically: nowadays only 8.68 kg CO2 result from one guest spending a night. For comparison: emissions of similar hotels come to 30-35kg CO2.
Reforestation in Panama
The Hotel Speicher am Ziegelsee in Germany follows a similar approach and became the first climate neutral hotel in the region of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Saving carbon emissions led to a carbon footprint of 12.93 kg per guest and night. Further emissions are being compensated through a reforestation project in Panama.
Climate positive in Hungary
The Irota Eco Lodge managed to become climate positive in 2016 by reaching a carbon footprint of Minus 53 kg. However, they don’t stop here but look for measures to further reduce CO2. One of the plans for the future: an electric car charged with energy of the own photovoltaic plant.
All of these examples inspire us and hopefully you too. Even if it’s not possible to buy your own wood-fired power plant, you can start by becoming aware of your own carbon footprint and then take on the challenge to lower factors with negative impact. You can calculate your ecological footprint on the web page of the WWF.