Sustainability, the key to our future
“Sustainability is the capacity to endure in a relatively ongoing way across various domains of life.”
It is the key to our future; allowing humans to coexist with our planet and causing the least amount of harm possible. In the 21st century we are blessed to have the knowledge that was not available previously, we now know the impact certain products and materials can have on our earth, we have access to sustainable alternatives, and can begin to repair the damage.
How can one person make a difference? You may wonder, but there are a number of ways you can make an impact, some of which you may already be doing:
1. Reduce single use plastic
This is definitely one you will already be participating in, just by your weekly grocery shop. In 2018 both Coles and Woolworths removed single use plastic bags and replaced them with reusable plastic bags, in just one year this caused an 80% drop in the use of single use plastic bags! Australia is also rolling out a plan over the next few years to eliminate other single use plastics such as straws, cutlery, and polystyrene food containers. The only difficult part is remembering to bring your bags with you to the supermarket!
2. Water, energy and waste saving initiatives
Although 70% of the earth is covered in water, only 0.5% of that is available for drinking! Saving water can be as simple as limiting shower times, running the dishwasher only when it is full, turning the water off when you brush your teeth or wash the car. Taking simple steps to save water helps to minimise the effect of droughts which our country is all too familiar with, saves energy required to process and deliver water to our homes, as well as the energy (and cost) required to heat water.
Radisson Blu Sydney has rolled out water saving shower heads in our guest rooms, and reward guests with bonus Radisson Rewards points if they choose to opt out of housekeeping or re-use towels. Our hotel also collects left-over soap bars, which are donated to Soap for Hope who recycle them, and create new soap cakes to be distributed to vulnerable communities. In 2019, our hotel prevented 1090kg of soap from going to landfill.
3. Embrace the use of solar power
There are many benefits of switching to an alternate source of power. Traditional electricity production uses thousands of litres of water per year, whereas generating power through solar panels, uses none whatsoever. Traditional electricity production uses fossil fuels to generate energy, which causes harmful carbon dioxide and methane gases, that lowers the quality of the air we breathe. Generating electricity from solar panels is carbon free, which helps to reduce the wider effect of climate change. We can offset up to 1 tonne of carbon dioxide for every megawatt hour of solar energy we use.
From July 2020, Radisson Blu Sydney has sourced its energy from wind and solar power, through Simply Energy. It has also become increasingly more simple and affordable to install solar panels at home, with a government rebate in place, many companies offering payment plans, and your excess energy can be sold back to the grid, so you can easily move to a solar power system in your own home.
4. Use businesses that participate in Carbon Offsetting
Your choices can help to contribute to global sustainability, every person who chooses a company who has sustainability initiatives and carbon offsetting in place over one who doesn’t, helps to make a difference. Companies such as Coca-Cola, Disney, McDonald’s, Domino’s, Nike, Ikea, Google and Etsy – just to name a few! You can find a list of the top 100 companies here who participate in Carbon Offsetting to reduce their impact on the earth.
Radisson Hotel Group automatically offsets the carbon footprint of every single meeting and event taking place at any of our more than 1,100 hotels worldwide. Per year, Radisson Meetings will offset 38,300 tons of CO₂; which is the equivalent of taking 6,500 cars off the road every year. Radisson Blu Sydney is also the first hotel in Oceania to be Green Key certified, this award is the is the leading standard for showing excellence in environmental responsibility and sustainability within the hotel and tourism industry.
5. Eat with a sustainable mind
Yes, you read that correctly! Our day to day choices when it comes to what we eat, can also help to make a positive impact on our planet. Choose locally made products, help support Aussie farmers and businesses, and reduce your carbon footprint. Radisson Blu Sydney sources all perishables from local suppliers, which helps reduce our ‘food miles’; by using local produce, less transportation is required which reduces our carbon footprint.
Choosing groceries packed in environmentally friendly packaging, using refillable products and items which are not wrapped individually can be a big help too. At Radisson Blu we also support a local animal shelter by donating food wastage, and anything that cannot be donated, is composted using our Waste to Water system, which means less than 1% of our food waste goes to landfill. Incorporating vegan meals into our diet can also help to cut greenhouse gas emissions and energy, save water and preserve our environment.
It is not such a daunting prospect to incorporate sustainability into our day to day lives, and as you have learned you may be already contributing in more than one way. With some small steps and some simple changes, we can each play our part to make a more sustainable future.
To learn more about Radisson Hotel Group’s sustainability efforts and Think Planet initiative, please click here.
Quote source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sustainability#cite_note-2