To reinvent hotels sustainably, Accor is launching PLANET 21
Accor's new program, PLANET 21, represents an important phase in the Group's commitment to sustainable development. More than ever before, Accor is placing sustainable hospitality at the heart of its strategy, intensifying its mobilization and involvnig all its hotels, employees and customers to fulfil a major objective: reinventing the hotel industry sustainably. We decode the program in five key points.
#1 - Why the name PLANET 21?
The word "PLANET" instantly evokes sustainable development. The figure "21" is a reference to Agenda 21, the action plan adopted by 173 heads of state at the Rio Summit in 1992. PLANET 21, therefore echoes our century's urgent issues: the need to get mobilized to preserve our planet, the environment and mankind.
#2 - What does this new program consist of?
PLANET 21 consists of 21 commitments and the same number of quantified targets set by Accor for 2015, including: disease prevention training in 95% of its hotels, well-balanced meals in 80% of its hotels, fair-trade products in 85% of its hotels and water and energy consumption cuts of 15% and 10% respectively in its owned hotels.
#3 - Why a new program?
"At a time when the Group is embarking on a phase of brisk expansion, with the aim of becoming the global reference in hotel industry, we are reaffirming our choice of responsible growth capable of generating shared value for all. With the PLANET 21 program, we are putting sustainable hospitality at the core of the Group's strategy, development and innovation. I am convinced that sustainable development will lead us towards a new business model. PLANET 21 gives us a fantastic driver of competitiveness for our brands, attractiveness for our customers and partners and loyalty for our employees," explains Denis Hennequin, Chairman & CEO.
Since 1994, when Accor created its Environment Department, Accor has implemented many measures to assist the development of local communities, cut water and energy consumption and reduce the environmental footprint of its hotels. It is time these achievements, which are unequaled in the hotel industry, were shared more openly with Accor's customers and partners.
#4 - How are customers involved in this commitment?
In order to fulfil the 21 commitments made by the Group, one thing is vital: customers must be involved so that we can achieve much more and increase results. This is particularly important since a growing number of customers cite sustainable development as a criteria of preference, as Sophie Flak, Executive VP for Academies and Sustainable Development, notes: "Nowadays, 70% of our major corporate customers include sustainable development criteria in their referencing policy and one in two customers say they account for this criteria when choosing a hotel! We designed PLANET 21 largely on the basis of these findings, creating a social, societal and environmental program with precise objectives that federates our employees and involves our customers."
To incite customers to participate in the hotel's actions, the new PLANET 21 strategy uses an innovative information and mobilization program. From the booking stage, during the room stay and at meals or snack time, customers will thus discover a wealth of varied, instructive signage that invites them to participate with simple gestures. The style used in the signage system is informal and considerate so as to involved all customers without ever making them feel guilty.
To guarantee the meticulousness of this program, use of PLANET 21 signage is restricted to establishments that meet required levels of performance in terms of sustainable development. The hotels' performance is monitored and verified using a check-list of 65 points or by obtaining certification from an acknowldeged external organization.
#5 -PLANET 21's sponsor: Tristan Lecomte, Founder of Alter Eco and Pur Projet
The 21 objectives in Accor's program include taking action to preserve the ecosystems around the hotels. Accor is a reforestation pionneer and has financed the planting of over two million trees using laundry savings generated thanks to the responsible behavior of its hoteliers and customers.
To accelerate the deployment of the "Plant for the Planet" project, the Group will now use the expertise of Tristan Lecomte, Founder of Alter Eco and Pur Projet, and a specialist in the development of community-based reforestation projects. "PLANET 21 fits in perfectly with Pur Projet's approach. With the assistance of their customers, the hotels participate directly in the protection of their own environment and in the development of local communities. My objective is to assist the deployment of Accor's reforestation project by integrating it better into the group's various businesses and making it more locally-focused," explains Tristan Lecomte.
With PLANET 21, Accor is therefore committing to reinventing the hotel industry sustainably by increasing the mobilization of its employees, customers and partners.