Whitbread, the hospitality firm behind leading British brands such as Premier Inn and Costa Coffee, has announced its achievement of an ambitious sustainability plan: to derive 100pc of its total electricity needs from clean and green renewable sources.
As a result, from the 1st of April, all of the brands within the giant company's family have been able to meet their power needs from technologies such as solar, wind and biomass.
The milestone has been delivered through the procurement of sustainable energy from SSE, a Big Six supplier, which has entered into a PPE contract with Whitbread. This means that SSE sells the energy that has been derived only from renewable sources at a competitive price that locks Whitbread into a contract.
The Sustainability Director at Whitbread, James Pitcher, said that the firm felt it had an obligation to lead the way when it came to sustainable business and climate change management in the hospitality sector. This drive helped to guide the decision to go 100pc renewable.
He added that Whitbread was firmly committed to lessening its environmental impact and doing business in a manner that respected both the planet and people. The company hopes that their achievement will represent a landmark that helps to set a new line in the sand for other hospitality providers and encourages them to follow suit.
In 2016, the company installed a sizeable solar programme, deploying solar rooftop PV systems across its estate of 88 Premier Inn locations in the UK. This generated over 1.3GW of clean energy and saved the company more than £280,000 annually.
The solar panels currently produce 1pc of the company's total needs, but Whitbread says that they will continue to play a key role in their own sustainability strategies.