TripAdvisor is extending its GreenLeaders program, which highlights hotels and B&Bs engaging in environmentally friendly practices, into 19 new markets.
GreenLeaders has grown quickly in the US, TripAdvisor says, and it now plans to take the program into Canada and Europe, including the UK, Ireland, Germany, France, Italy and Spain.
The hotel ratings site launched GreenLeaders in April 2013, following consultation with the United Nations Environment Programme, the US Green Building Council, Energy Star, and the International Center for Responsible Tourism Canada. The company has since awarded the status to over 3,700 hotels and B&Bs, ranging from small, independent establishments to multinational brands including Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide, Select Registry and Coast Hotels.
TripAdvisor says GreenLeaders is the largest national green hotel program that directly assesses eco-friendly practices.
The American Hotel & Lodging Association has integrated GreenLeaders’ minimum eco-friendly requirements as part of its Green Guidelines.
TripAdvisor assesses each application it receives against environmental criteria including recycling and composting, renewable energy use, electric car charging and green roofing.
To meet GreenLeaders’ minimum requirements, hotels must:
- Track energy use on a regular basis (at least quarterly).
- Use at least 75 percent energy-efficient light bulbs.
- Have a current and active towel re-use plan in place.
- Have a current and active linen re-use plan in place.
- Recycle at least two types of waste.
- Train staff on green practices.
- Educate guests on green practices.
The GreenLeaders Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum awards are displayed on properties’ TripAdvisor listings.
Nearly half of Marriott‘s global hotel portfolio has GreenLeaders status, and Marriott vice president for sustainability and supplier diversity Denise Naguib said she expects this to increase when the program expands into new markets.