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Press releases 2013

11 Sep 2013

Carbon Trust Water Standard achieved

Whitbread stems the flow to achieve prestigious water saving award


UK’s largest hotels and restaurants business achieves Carbon Trust Water Standard – only the eighth business in the world to do so

11th September 2013

Whitbread, the UK’s largest hotels and restaurants business, has achieved the recently launched Carbon Trust Water Standard – one of only eight businesses to do so in the world and the first in the hospitality industry.  The Standard is awarded to businesses that are able to demonstrate that they have a robust approach to water measurement and management, and achieve year on year reductions in use.

Achieving the Carbon Trust Water Standard is a direct result of Whitbread’s corporate responsibility strategy, ‘Good Together’.  The programme is designed to make the business as sustainable as possible and includes targets on energy, carbon, water and staff engagement (amongst other things). It provides independent, third party verification that Whitbread’s commitment to delivering water savings and promoting water conservation has led to real results, with a 9% reduction over the certification period.

Whitbread has the target of achieving a 25% reduction in water use by 2017 (from a 2009 baseline) across its hotel and restaurant estate.  The target was recently revised upwards after the business achieved its original goal of a 15% saving four years early.  Water saving and conservation helps to decrease water costs across the business, saving valuable water resources and cutting carbon emissions associated with water demand, particularly through heating and treatment.

Commenting on the achievement, Chris George, Energy and Environment Manager for Whitbread Hotels and Restaurants, said: “As water becomes more precious it is essential that hospitality businesses of all sizes use it more efficiently.  By achieving the Carbon Trust Standard we have demonstrated that simple changes can make a huge difference.  By installing water saving technologies across our hotels and restaurants, and educating team members and customers on the importance of water saving water where we can, we have saved thousands of litres of water – equivalent to 180 Olympic swimming pools – and made our business more efficient.  It’s rewarding to have our achievements recognised by the Carbon Trust and I hope the industry follows in our footsteps.”

To achieve its water saving targets Whitbread installed a variety of water saving technologies across its hotels and restaurants estate.  It replaced all of the shower heads in Premier Inn hotels with aerated low-flow versions, introduced low flush toilet cisterns and taps across its hotel and restaurant estate as well as installing grey water and rainwater recycling technologies in new developments. 

Whitbread also invested heavily in real time water metering technology in its hotels and restaurants to model water consumption at individual sites and identify leaks early – something that was commended by the Carbon Trust.

Chris continued: “As a business we’re extremely proud of our inclusive culture and training.  We believe it results in the best possible experience and service for our guests and brings out the best in our teams.  By introducing sustainability into our staff training, and developing easily accessible online training guides and fun interactive quizzes on how we can save water, we trained our 40,000 team members on how they can be more resource efficient and contribute towards our water saving target. 

“It’s initiatives like that which demonstrated the depth of our commitment to saving water and helped us to achieve the Carbon Trust Water Standard. We will continue to build on the water management systems we have to deliver even furtherreductions in the future to make a real difference.”

The Carbon Trust Water Standard certifies organisations that measure, manage and reduce water use year on year.  To meet the Standard businesses are judged on a number of criteria including governance, water savings, reporting and communication among other things.

Darran Messem, Managing Director of Certification at the Carbon Trust, added: “We have seen Whitbread demonstrate a continued commitment to improving its environmental performance for a number of years now.  Back in 2009 Whitbread was one of the first hospitality companies to achieve the Carbon Trust Standard for carbon reduction, and now it is the first to have reductions in water use certified under the Carbon Trust Water Standard.”

“By achieving independent certification, showing that ambitious policies are resulting in genuine reductions, Whitbread are setting an example to other businesses.  The savings made as a result of these environmental actions shows that sustainability and success go hand in hand.”

As well as achieving the Carbon Trust Water Standard, Whitbread also achieved recertification to the Carbon Trust Standard for carbon reduction.  More details on that and Whitbread’s Good Together programme can be found here (link to Good Together pages).



For more information, please contact:

James Anderson or James Boyd-Wallis at Camargue: Tel: 020 7636 7366 

Email janderson@camarguepr.com / jboydwallis@camarguepr.com



Notes to editors


About Premier Inn:

Award-winning Premier Inn is the UK’s best value hotel brand with over 650 hotels and more than 52,000 rooms across the UK and Ireland.  Premier Inn bedrooms feature en-suite bathrooms, TV with Freeview, and WiFi Internet access. All Premier Inns feature a bar and restaurant, situated inside the hotel or adjacent, offering a wide range of food choices.   


About Whitbread:

Whitbread PLC is the UK’s largest hotel and restaurant group operatingmarket-leading businesses in budget hotels, restaurants and coffee shops.  Itswell-loved brands are Premier Inn, Costa, Beefeater, Brewers Fayre, Table Table and Taybarns.

Whitbread PLC employs over 40,000 people globally and serves over 22 million customersevery month in over 2,000 outlets* across the UK.

Whitbread has outlined five-year growth milestones (to 2018) to increase the number of Premier Inn UK rooms to at least 75,000 and to double the size of Costa with global system sales of £2bn.

In the year ended 28 February 2013, Whitbread PLC reported a 14.2% increase inGroup Revenue to £2,030 million and Underlying Profit before tax of£356.5 million up 11.4%.

Whitbread PLC is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituentof the FTSE 100. It is also a member of the FTSE4Good Index.

*excludes Costa Franchise stores and Costa Express


About the Carbon Trust:

The Carbon Trust is an independent company with a mission to accelerate the move to a sustainable, low carbon economy. The Carbon Trust:

  • Advises businesses, governments and the public sector on opportunities in a sustainable, low carbon world.
  • Measures and certifies the environmental footprint of organisations, products and services.
  • Helps develop and deploy low carbon technologies and solutions, from energy efficiency to renewable power.

For further information please contact the Carbon Trust press office on 020 7170 7050 or press@carbontrust.com. Alternatively visit www.carbontrust.com.

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