InterContinental Hotels Group’s (IHG) Green Engage sustainability system has won volume precertification established by the U.S. Green Building Council and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute.
The group, whose brands include Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza and Staybridge Suites, says it is the first to receive the award for an existing hotels program.
Volume precertification gives companies a streamlined path to LEED certification.
IHG hotels use the Green Engage tool to measure, report and manage environmental impacts, while taking guest experience and return on investment into account. The group said it has 1,000 hotels signed up for the program, which can deliver over $90,000 a year in energy savings by making hotels 15 to 20 percent more energy efficient.
If rolled out across all 4,500 IHG hotels, the program could save $300 million. IHG will soon launch a new edition of Green Engage, and plans to expand the tool to more hotels this year.
“On average, energy is the second largest cost in hotels and our hotel owners want help to manage this,” Jim Abrahamson, president of IHG’s Americas region, said. “Green Engage aids hotels in becoming more energy efficient, environmentally sustainable while delivering significant cost savings to them. The extra boost of LEED precertification will be of real value to owners as it provides a stamp of approval recognized by industry and corporate clients.”
IHG says it is the world’s largest hotel chain by number of rooms, with more than 650,000 in 100 countries and territories.
Marriott developed and launched its own LEED pre-certified green hotel prototype design in 2009. The prototype has LEED silver status.
Marriott has also set a target to increase its number of LEED-certified or registered new build and operating hotels to 300 by 2015.
But a survey recently found that only two percent of corporate travel executives would include LEED certification in their definition of hotel sustainability.