SM Hotels Celebrates World Recycling Day with Stronger Commitment to Sustainable Path

As the travel industry continues to bounce back from the challenges of the recent global challenges, SM Hotels and Conventions Corp. (SMHCC) remains committed to achieving a sustainable cycle through all of its properties across the Philippines. Highlighting endeavors and partnerships that showcase the company’s strong commitment, this World Recycling Day, SMHCC showcases its new weapons to achieve Net Zero, while continuously improving its operations to be a top choice of accommodation and events in the country.

“SMHCC’s sustainability efforts focus on various ESG practices and metrics, such initiatives are all directed towards achieving Zero Waste, Zero Green Washing, and Zero Biases. We’re happy to share that over the past years, SM Hotels and Convention Centers has continued to showcase its green side of the business, which is not just economical, but also environmental and fuels inspirations to our various stakeholders,” shared Chef Leah Magallanes, SM Hotels and Conventions Corp. Vice President for Quality and Sustainability.

The Seven Green Goals
Over the past years, SMHCC drove its sustainability effort to a new height by stimulating its operation with new ways and means to minimize waste, create greener solutions in its operations, and establish stronger stakeholder participation in its efforts. The company has established seven green goals that are anchored on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG). Through these goals, SMHCC has already achieved 40% of its goals toward Net Zero.

Among the goals identified by Chef Leah Magallanes are:

Goal #1: Energy Efficiency
SM Hotels and Convention Centers aims to reduce emissions from energy consumption by a minimum of 3% year-on-year, fueling its goal of reducing its energy consumption by 70% from baseline by 2030. This equals a 40.15% aggregated energy consumption per guest since 2019.

Goal #2: Water Recycling
The Company continues its water recycling effort and was able to reuse 100% of its effluent water. The Company aims to recycle water to be potable in the coming years. Since 2029, SMHCC has recycled a total of 414,789m3 of water in its operations across the country.

Goal #3: Responsible Consumption
In terms of fuel consumption, with its long-term goal of reducing fuel consumption by 70% from baseline by 2030, SMHCC has been reducing its fuel consumption (LPG, company fleet, diesel) by a minimum of 16% year-on-year. In terms of plastic disposal, SMHCC has reduced its plastic disposal by 28% year-on-year, and working towards achieving of 80% reduction in plastic used in operations. This goal aims to achieve an average of 36% on plastic refusal. SMHCC is also eager to maintain its food waste below the average industry standard of 300g/cover or 60% on food water reduction, below industry standard and baseline data in 2019.

Goal #4: Diversion
Aside from being responsible for consumption, SMHCC is diverting its waste to reuse, recycle, and upcycle. Based on the recent report, the company has been recycling a minimum of 9% of plastic waste year-on-year, which they aim to increase to 80% by 2028. In terms of food waste, with a minimum of 9% of food waste going to compost, the company is targeting to increase this to 80% by 2040. SMHCC is also diverting 4% of its recyclable waster based on year-on-year data, and they plan to increase this to 50% from baseline by 2040. These efforts equal an average of 44% of recycled plastic and 198 tons of food waste diverted, a 48% ratio. 

Goal #5: GHG
Since it launched its Sustainability Science-based Targets, SM Hotels and Convention Centers has been vocal on setting to reduce its GHG emission by 70% from baseline by 2035. This effort is evident in the company’s reported 10% year-on-year reduction in emissions from energy consumption, which translates to a 40% reduction in its GHG emissions from a baseline of 2019.

Goal #6: Diversity and Equal Opportunity
Aside from the environment, SMHCC is also working towards a sustainable working environment by promoting diversity and equal opportunity in its organizations. SMHCC is continuously providing equal opportunity for females in male-dominated departments such as Engineering, IT, and Culinary. The company is also providing equal opportunity for all genders in SMHCC’s leadership teams by 2022 and is set to hire 5% of total manning from a minority or marginalized group by 2040. In terms of training, SMHCC is aiming to upgrade employee skills by providing and increasing its transition assistance programs by 75% in 2040. To date, SMHCC’s executive position is composed of 49% female, while its manager and senior manager position is composed of 48% female.

Goal #7: Sustainable Tourism
Inspiring the local community, SMHCC is set to employ a minimum of 60% of residents near the property, 10% of total F&B suppliers should be in support of an MSME, and 30% of ala carte menu and two banquet menus should be designated to supporting local ingredients, products, or culture.

SMHCC is also targeting to support one local community in improving their economic, intellectual status, and overall well-being through the promotion of its circularity programs. To date, an average of 88% of SM Hotels and Convention Centers are local hires, an average of 42% of its ala carte menus support local ingredients, products, or culture, and a total of 1,637 local MSMEs are supported by the company. 

Stronger Partnership
“Among our efforts of achieving these goals include our partnership with equally sustainable companies in the Philippines, which aim for a better and more sustainable future. We’re thankful and excited to continue our works with Hope Water, Diversey Philippines, Greenspace PH, and Green Trident Services, who have been inspiring us to do more and better,” added Chef Leah.

Orca Biodigester

Over the past years, SM Hotels and Convention Centers has developed some of its sustainability programs through the help of various groups and organizations that deliver tremendous results to keep our environment healthy. Among the listed achievements reported by SMHCC include:

Green Space's Bokashi Bucket

  1. Through HOPE, SMHCC was able to contribute over Php300,000 to help build classrooms while also enabling the cleanup of over 7,100 kg of plastic waste since 2022, diverting them away from nature.
  2. Through Soap for Hope, SMHCC has diverted over 253 kg of used bar soaps and converted these soaps into new ones.
  3. Through Green Space, SMHCC has diverted a total of 198,640 kg of food using the bokashi composting technique.
  4. Through Green Trident, SMHCC was able to divert over 10,000 kg of paper waste and 2,000 kg of plastic waste, which were then used to produce sustainable products, such as Papel ni Juan recycled bond paper and Poly al Eco Boards. 
  5. In recent months, SMHCC has also partnered with Dunbrae Philippines, which introduced Orca Biodigester in the Philippines. This innovation has helped Taal Vista Hotel divert a total of 11,672 kg of food waste since the installation of the biodigester last July 2023. 

Soap for Hope

Following the success of these endeavors, as SMHCC celebrates World Recycling Day, it proudly announces its latest partnership with social entrepreneur Zarah Juan, the Tela Tales.
A recycling program that advocates environmental stewardship, Tela Tales aims to create a circular economy for condemned linens. Inspired by its precept, “Transforming lives, one textile at a time,” this transformative initiative endeavors to uplift the lives of communities near SM hotel properties by equipping them with a new skill to improve their socioeconomic conditions. In collaboration with Ms. Zara Juan, used textiles will be transformed into fashionable and sustainable bags, which will be sold at a competitive price, to help women have a source of livelihood.

Along with this launch, SMHCC also introduced its Sustainable Diner program, which is another testament to SMHCC’s commitment to a circular economy in its operations (i.e. from food wastes to compost for gardening and farming; to producing vegetables, herbs, and fruits used back by the hotel). Ultimately, the said program is aimed at expanding healthy and environment-friendly dining options, directed towards reducing dining wastes and mitigating GHG emissions in the food service industry.

“The launch of Tela Tales, complemented by Sustainable Diner, marks a significant milestone in SMHCC’s Sustainability journey. It is a testament to the company’s relentless commitment to move the needle one linen and one plate at a time,” Chef Leah concluded.

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