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PR’s role in positioning ITC as green hotels

Chapter – 1: Introduction

Green or Eco hotel is a hotel or accommodation that has made important environmental
improvements to its structure in order to minimize its impact on the environment. The
basic definition of a hotel is an environmentally responsible lodging that follows the
practices of green living. These hotels have to be certified green by an independent third-
party or by the state they are located in. Traditionally, these hotels were mostly presented
as Eco Lodges because of their location, often in jungles, and their design inspired by the
use of traditional building methods applied by skilled local craftsmen in areas, such
as Costa Rica and Indonesia.
As eco-hotels expand beyond the jungle and into the mainstream, more properties than
ever before are selling themselves as green. Today, eco hotels also include properties in
less "natural" locations that have invested in improving their "green" credentials.
Green hotels follow strict green guidelines to ensure that their guests are staying in a safe,
non-toxic and energy-efficient accommodation. Here are some basic characteristics of a
green hotel:

 Housekeeping uses non-toxic cleaning agents and laundry detergent

 100% organic cotton sheets, towels and mattresses
 Non-smoking environment
 Renewable energy sources like solar or wind energy
 Bulk organic soap and amenities instead of individual packages to reduce waste
 Guest room and hotel lobby recycling bins
 Towel and sheet re-use (guests can tell housekeeping to leave these slightly used
items to reduce water consumption)
 Energy-efficient lighting
 On-site transportation with green vehicles
 Serve organic and local-grown food
 Non-disposable dishes
 Offers a fresh-air exchange system
 Grey-water recycling, which is the reuse of kitchen, bath and laundry water for
garden and landscaping.
 Newspaper recycling program

Ecology is a very strong trend either convictions or a fashion, caring for the earth has
become an ideal of many. As a result, eco-hotels have become an increasingly popular
alternative in the tourism industry, the increase in demand has led therefore to a large
range of hotels with planet friendly options for all requirements.
According to the Royal Spanish Academy, one of the interpretations of the term ecology
includes "defense and protection of nature and environment" From what we understand,
to be green what is sought is to defend and protect everything natural. around us. contact
with nature is something almost inherent to the holiday, providing an opportunity to carry
out environmental.
An ecological hotel is one that is fully integrated into the environment without damaging
the environment, contributing in some way to progress and improvement of the local
community and sustainable growth of the tourism industry.
New properties are being built from sustainable resources–tropical hardwoods, local
stone–and designed to better blend in with their environment. In addition, they are also
being run on eco-friendly principles, such as serving organic or locally grown food or
using natural cooling as opposed to air conditioning.
ITC Hotels
ITC Hotels is India's second largest hotel chain with over 100 hotels.[citation needed] Based in the
Hotels Division Headquarters at the ITC Green Centre in Gurgaon, New Delhi, ITC Hotels is
also the exclusive franchisee of The Luxury Collection brand of Starwood Hotels and
Resorts in India. It is part of the ITC Limited (formerly India Tobacco Company) group of
companies.[1][2] ITC Hotels is regularly voted amongst the best employers in Asia in the
hospitality sector.[3]

Launched in 1975, ITC Hotels, India's premier chain of luxury hotels, has become synonymous with Indian
hospitality. ITC Hotels pioneered the concept of 'Responsible Luxury' in the hospitality industry, drawing on
the strengths of ITC groups' exemplary sustainability practices. Responsible Luxury personifies an ethos
that integrates world-class green practices with contemporary design elements to deliver the best of luxury
in the greenest possible manner.
The Responsible Luxury commitment of ITC Hotels blends elements of nature to deliver a unique value
proposition to guests, conscious of their responsibility to be planet positive. Today, these unique
interventions have made ITC Hotels the greenest luxury hotel chain in the world with all its ten premium
luxury hotels LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certified.

Chapter- 2 : Literature Review

There's no doubt that green hospitality has come a long way from the traditional eco-
hotel tropes of thatched-roof bungalows and on-staff naturalists.

No one would accuse these hotels of green washing; indeed, they're among the industry
leaders. But as green becomes the color of the day, many luxury chains and boutique
properties, already experienced in catering to lifestyle fantasies, are scrambling—
sometimes carelessly—to bottle it and market it to guests. Perhaps this is the inevitable
result when a feel-good trend such as greening meets the realities of the marketplace. It's
not just that legitimate and effective environmental measures are expensive and unwieldy
for hotels to implement or that there are inherent conflicts between mass tourism and
environmentalism—the industry is also plagued by a lack of consistent and uniform
standards. Without government regulation or universally accepted certification programs
(see "How Green Is My Hotel?"), travelers have little help distinguishing between
competing claims for their green dollars. Unless hotels can show guests they're meeting
the highest standards, they risk alienating the very affluent, intelligent customers they're
trying to attract.

Perhaps the biggest problem, for both hoteliers and travelers, is one of definition. To put
it simply: what on earth does "green" mean anymore?A hotel that draws on solar power is
green. So is one that composts food waste or passes scraps on to pig farmers,

Ecotourism, by its traditional definition, places equal emphasis on energy, conservation,

ecology, and community—issues that are integral to most eco-lodges. But experts such as
Hitesh Mehta, a Florida-based landscape architect and board member of the International
Ecotourism Society, suggest that "ecotourism" should be thought of as a category within
a larger idea: sustainable travel. Mass tourism can be one of the most depleting effects on
the environment, explains Sean Southey of the United Nations Development
Programme's Equator Initiative. Jets and cars consume fossil fuels, hotels create tons of
waste, and trekking humans encroach into natural areas. Sustainable travel seeks to
reduce negative impact both locally and on a global scale.

To approach sustainability, one must first calculate the sum of a building's environmental
impact, often called its ecological "footprint." A sustainable hotel should have as small a
footprint as possible; it should sit lightly on the land. Eco-lodges do this in part simply
because they are physically quite small. It's a different story at larger hotels and resorts.
"One large hotel in an urban setting can have as much effect, for good or ill, as the eco-
lodges of an entire region," says Tedd Saunders of Boston's industry-leading Saunders
Hotel Group, which owns the Lenox Hotel. But economics and logistics make it difficult
to replicate an eco-lodge's benefits in urban areas and on a larger scale.

In fact, a true zero footprint is nearly impossible to achieve. Take, for example, energy
consumption, an issue close to the hearts of many travelers concerned with global
warming and energy dependence. Hotel companies are already trying to cut down on
electricity use (not to mention energy bills). They might replace incandescent lightbulbs
with fluorescents, install motion sensors to reduce power use, or add new glass or
insulation to cut heating and cooling costs. Many new properties are being built from the
ground up with all these technologies in place, but retrofitting an existing building—to
create a sort of "hybrid" hotel—is an expensive endeavor.

Solar and wind power are both still rare in the hotel industry. Large buildings would
require massive solar arrays to derive more than a fraction of their power from the sun,
and harnessing wind is wildly impractical in an urban setting. Four Sheraton hotels in
New York, New Jersey, and San Diego are trying carbonate fuel cells, which create
"clean" electricity through a process whose only by-product is water. Although the San
Diego Sheraton receives 60 percent of its power from fuel cells, in most hotels, these
cutting-edge devices have only a limited effect.
And a carbon footprint isn't just a matter of how much electricity a hotel sucks from the
grid. A strict accounting would also include all the energy needed to construct the
property in the first place, including that used to transport the building materials from the
far points of the globe. Most hotels could become truly "carbon-neutral" only by
purchasing green credits or carbon-offsetting (e.g., paying a company to plant trees to
counteract the hotel's carbon-dioxide emissions).

Just as carbon neutrality is a noble yet expensive goal, so is achieving an invisible

footprint on ecology, be it through minimizing waste, increasing water management, or
supporting local communities. Among eco-lodges and their scaled-up offspring, "eco-
resorts," the incentive to adopt more stringent standards is strong. The big unknown,
however, is whether the rest of the industry will follow suit.

Ultimately, the decision facing both the hotel industry and travelers isn't "green or not?"
but "how green?" Though some observers scoff at sheet-and-towel programs as lipstick
on a pig, Southey considers them a positive sign. The hotel industry has made great
changes recently because properties suddenly realized they had to keep up with the
industry leaders. "The goalposts have shifted quite radically," Southey says. "The
question is, What's next?"

The answer, most likely, will be lots of little steps. Hotels sit at the top of dozens of
supply chains—from bananas to coffee to furniture—many of which are undergoing their
own sustainable revolutions. A property can be only as good as its suppliers, which makes
hotels handy barometers for the sustainability of the entire consumer economy. Currently,
some hoteliers say they want to add more environmentally friendly fixtures, wallpaper, or
lighting but are holding off until the prices drop—or the quality improves. Others are
making those changes now and betting that travelers appreciate the difference.

"People for the longest time associated environmental sensitivity with inconvenience, and
we're trying to debunk that," says Stefan Mühle, general manager of the Orchard Garden
Hotel. Michael Freed, whose Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur, California, incorporates
extensive sustainable elements, says such attention to detail is just an example of what
makes any hotel great: it communicates a sense of place and suggests a way of life.
Hotels don't have to follow their customers, Freed argues. "Guests see things we do that
they can take home with them," he explains. Hotels can lead guests and introduce them to
the compatibility of sustainable practices and a luxury lifestyle.

Ecotourism has always emphasized education—"an interpretive experience," as Mehta

puts it, of the local ecology and culture. Why shouldn't all sustainable tourism—from
high-design resorts to generic business hotels—make that a goal? After all, most people's
"natural" environments look a lot more like hotel rooms than rain forests. The most
important test for a green hotel may be whether it can teach even concerned travelers a
thing or two about how to live better once the vacation ends.

ITC and its devotion to green hospitality

ITC Hotels has an exclusive tie-up with Starwood Hotels & Resorts in bringing its
premium brand, the'Luxury Collection', to India. ITC Hotels - Luxury Collection are
super deluxe and premium hotels located at strategic business and leisure locations. The
eleven hotels which are part of this collection are: ITC Grand Chola in Chennai, ITC
Maurya in Delhi, ITC Maratha in Mumbai, ITC Sonar in Kolkata, ITC Grand Central in
Mumbai, ITC Windsor & ITC Gardenia in Bengaluru, ITC Kakatiya in Hyderabad and
ITC Mughal in Agra, ITC Rajputana in Jaipur, and ITC Grand Bharat in Gurgaon (Now

ITC Green Centre

ITC Green Centre in Gurgaon, the headquarters of ITC's Hotels Business is the physical
expression of this commitment to sustainability - Ecological, Social and Economic. This
building is one of the world's largest green buildings with space of over 170,000 square
feet. The ITC Green Centre which was earlier declared the largest LEED Platinum rated
office space in the world in 2004, was re-certified in 2012 as the worlds highest rated
green building with Platinum certification by the US Green Building Council.
ITC Gardenia, Bangalore is the first Indian Hotel and world's largest, to get the LEED
Platinum rating - the highest green building certification globally.

ITC Maurya, New Delhi received the award for'Best Luxury Hotel' at the Star Hospitality
Awards 2007-08 and the NATIONAL TOURISM AWARD 2007 for 'Best Eco-Friendly
Hotel' from Ministry of Tourism.ITC Maurya is a Green Hotel endorsing Responsible
Luxury. It is certified as the world's first LEED EB* (Leadership in Energy and
Environmental Design) Platinum rated hotel by the US Green Building Council.

 The Company’s models of sustainable development and value chains generate sustainable
livelihoods for around 6 million people, many of whom represent the weakest in society.
 ITC has sustained its position of being the only Company in the world of comparable dimensions to
have achieved the global environmental distinction of being carbon positive (for 10 consecutive
years), water positive (for 13 years in a row) and solid waste recycling positive (for 8 years in

 ITC's renewable energy portfolio ensures that over 43% of its total energy requirements are met
from renewable energy sources - a remarkable achievement given the large manufacturing base of
the Company.

 ITC's premium luxury hotels, several office complexes and factories of are LEED® (Leadership in
Energy & Environmental Design) certified at the highest level by the US Green Building
Council/Indian Green Building Council and the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) under its star
rating scheme.

 The footprint of ITC’s CSR programmes reach out to over 6, 70,000 households
in more than 10,600 villages ITC’s Social Investments Programme is spread to 71
districts across 14 states in the country and can be viewed at a glance in the
following chart:

Intervention Areas Unit of Measurement Cumulative till date

Total Districts Covered Number 75

Social and Farm Forestry Hectare 223,915

Soil and Moisture Conservation Hectare 236,537

Sustainable Agricultural Practices

Compost Units Number 28,557

Livestock Development Initiative

Cattle Development Centres Number 250
Artificial Inseminations Number (in lakhs) 17.15
Economic Empowerment of Women
Self Help Group Members Persons 26,214
Livelihoods created Persons 49,957

Primary Education
Beneficiaries Children (in lakhs) 4.54

Health and Sanitation

Low Cost Sanitary Units Number 11,188

Vocational Training
Students Enrolled Number 27,295

ITC Sustainability App

Inspired by a vision to serve a larger national purpose and abide with the strong value of
Trusteeship, ITC has crafted innovative business models to create larger societal capital
while simultaneously delivering long term shareholder value. The ITC Sustainability App
demonstrates the company's endeavours in Sustainable Business Practices.

For iOS For Android

Policy on environment, health and safety

ITC is committed to conducting its operations with due regard for the environment and providing a safe and
healthy workplace for its employees.


It is ITC's policy:

1. To contribute to sustainable development through the establishment and implementation of

environment, health and safety standards that meet the requirement of relevant laws, regulations
and codes of practice ;
2. To take into account environment, occupational health and safety aspects in planning and decision-
making ;
3. To provide appropriate training to employees as well as service providers' employees on EHS and
implement best practices ;
4. To instil a sense of duty in every employee including those of service providers at the Company's
premises, towards their personal safety, as well as that of their co-workers ;
5. To ensure adoption of resource efficient and cleaner production methods;
6. To continue to increase the contribution from renewable energy sources towards meeting overall
energy demand;

1. This policy is communicated to all employees in an appropriate and meaningful manner.
2. ITC Units have appropriate systems and processes in place to ensure compliance with the Policy
and with statutory provisions, including processing of grievances for redressal. Divisional / SBU
Chief Executives, through members of the respective Management Committees, will ensure
implementation of this Policy.
3. Compliance with the Policy will be regularly monitored and evaluated by the
Sustainability Compliance Review Committee (SCRC) of the Corporate
Management Committee (CMC). The report of the SCRC will be reviewed by the
CMC every quarter. The CSR & Sustainability Committee of the Board will
supervise the implementation of this Policy.


The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), co-founded by current CEO Rick Fedrizzi,
Mike Italiano, and David Gottfried in 1993, is a private 501(c)3, membership-based non-profit
organization that promotes sustainability in buildings design, construction, and operation.
USGBC is best known for its development of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental
Design (LEED) green building rating systems and its annual Greenbuild International
Conference and Expo, the world’s largest conference and expo dedicated to green building.
USGBC was one of eight national councils that helped found the World Green Building
Council (WorldGBC), of which USGBC CEO Rick Fedrizzi is the current chair, in 1999. [1]

Through its partnership with the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI), USGBC offers
a suite of LEED professional credentials that denote expertise in the field of green building.
USGBC incentivizes LEED certification by awarding extra certification points to building
projects completed with a LEED-certified professional on staff.

Laws and Enactment:

On May 23, 2013, Rep. David McKinley introduced the Better Buildings Act of 2014 (H.R.
2126; 113th Congress) into the United States House of Representatives. The bill would
amend federal law aimed at improving the energy efficiency of commercial office buildings.
The bill would also create a program called "Tenant Star" similar to the existingEnergy
Star program.[11] The U.S. Green Building Council was involved in organizing and supporting
this bill.[11]

The U.S. Green Building Council also supported the Streamlining Energy Efficiency for
Schools Act of 2014 (H.R. 4092; 113th Congress), a bill that would require the United States
Department of Energy to establish a centralized clearinghouse to disseminate information on
federal programs, incentives, and mechanisms for financing energy-efficient retrofits and
upgrades at schools.[12] The U.S. Green Building Council said that the bill "aims to make
important improvements to existing federal policies

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)

That is no secret that with operations running 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365
days a year, hotels consume natural resources at a high rate. There is an enormous
opportunity for the industry and guests to positively affect the built environment.

For years, USGBC has diligently made progress toward greening the hospitality sector.
Among these efforts was the establishment of the LEED User Group for Hospitality and
Venues, which engages in multifaceted dialogue and peer-to-peer collaboration to identify
best practices, lessons learned and ongoing challenges for sustainability in the sector.
The LEED in Motion: Hospitality report brings the dialogue to a wider network and
highlights the opportunity for triple-bottom-line wins when hotels think sustainable.
Across the world, demand for green hotels is rising. Today, LEED-certified hotels of all
sizes are found in more than 40 U.S. states, 31 countries and five continents. It’s a
movement sparked in part by guest preferences. According to a recent Trip
Advisor survey, nearly two-thirds of travelers reported plans to make more
environmentally friendly choices over the next year. And while on vacation, 88 percent of
travelers turned off lights when not in their hotel room, 78 percent participated in the
hotel's linen and towel reuse program and 58 percent used recycling in the hotel.

In response to this shift, companies such as Starwood’s Elements brand, Richard

Branson’s Virgin Hotel Group and Hyatt Hotels include LEED mandates and policies in
their design and construction specs. ITC Hotels in India requires not just LEED
certification, but also top performance.

ITC Windsor

ITC Windsor, spanning over 298,000 square feet, is the first hotel in South India to earn
LEED Platinum under the LEED for Existing Buildings program. Smart planning and
innovative technology, combined with an emphasis on responsible luxury, led to
important new benchmarks in energy and water efficiency, solid waste recycling and
carbon reduction. Today, ITC Windsor treats and recycles enough water to irrigate 65,000
trees annually. Its electrical energy demand is entirely met through renewable sources.
Cooling demand is greatly reduced by having more than 60 percent of its roof area
covered with highly reflective materials. Also noteworthy is that annual CO2 emissions
have been cut by nearly 13,000 tons.

ITC Gardenia
ITC Gardenia, Bengaluru is the first Indian Hotel and world's largest, to get
the LEED Platinum rating- the highest green building certification globally.

LEED User Group Insights: Focusing on sector best practices

LEED User Groups are participant-driven, USGBC-hosted peer networks that share a
common goal of working together to elevate green building and lead the way for greater
LEED adoption and efficiency within their respective industries. LEED User Groups
identify, share and publicize best practices related to the design, construction, operation
and maintenance of green buildings in four key sectors.

Participants are USGBC member organizations that are actively committed to making
sustainability and LEED more applicable to their business and more relatable to their
customers and stakeholders. The first User Group launched in 2012 to focus on
sustainable industrial facilities, and in 2014, USGBC launched three additional LEED
User Groups for retail and restaurant, hospitality and venues, and commercial real estate.

User Groups often use greenbuild as an opportunity to share their results with the
broader USGBC community—but once a year isn’t enough! Members convene
regularly to discuss challenges and opportunities in their working area, which is why
we’re kicking off our latest blog series, LEED User Group Insights, to share their
industry knowledge: