In Brief

Rail Europe - Bener Oberland Regional Pass

Trains could save 1m tonnes of CO2

Mabrian Technologies, a company specialising in Travel Intelligence, has carried out a study on the potential impact of replacing domestic air routes of less than two and a half hours, and a maximum of 500km, with high-speed trains.

The study analyses the savings in CO2 emissions if the regulation were to be applied in multiple European countries. Spain, Germany and France are the countries with the greatest opportunity for CO2 emissions savings in Europe.

According to the report – which has analysed the total air schedule for 2023 on domestic routes with ground distances of less than 500km – there are 554 such routes in Europe, which will carry around 44 million passengers and produce around 2.3 million tonnes of CO2 this year.

Due to their greater efficiency in terms of emissions, using high-speed trains could reduce this environmental impact by an average of 48 per cent. This would translate into a saving of more than 1 million tonnes of CO2 in just one year, which is equivalent to more than 200,000 cars running continuously for 12 months. 


Ponant paves way for carbon neutral cruise

PONANT has committed to a uniquely designed transoceanic ship, which will be ready by 2030, supporting the evolution towards carbon neutrality.  The company’s R&D team have come up with a pioneering concept. 

Swap2Zero aims for zero CO2 eq emissions in operation, with one month autonomy by being the first to combine six major decarbonisation technology building blocks:

1. A sail power system and hull providing an average of 50 per cent of the propulsion energy using the force of the wind;

2. A surface area totalling over 1,000m2 of photovoltaic panels, with new generation organic solar eco-designed devices integrated into the structures and sails;

3. A low temperature fuel cell operating on liquid hydrogen for propulsion, with the water and heat produced being recycled;

4. A high temperature fuel cell to meet the ship’s hotel load requirements, with the heat emitted being recovered and used to produce hot water;

5. On-board carbon capture technology, coupled with the high temperature fuel cell;

6. An innovative bespoke energy management system to control and distribute power without any generators being in service


First ESG executive education course launched

King’s Business School and the hospitality sector’s Energy and Environment Alliance (EEA) have launched an executive education programme developed with input from the industry’s leaders to help them to embed Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) measures in their businesses.

The programme was developed through discussion with over 40 senior hospitality leaders who emphasised the role of COVID and recent energy price spikes, alongside the new IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Standards, in providing both an impetus and an opportunity to accelerate progress on environmental measures ahead of the commitment made by over 100 countries to reach net zero CO2 emissions by 2050.

According to the Urban Land Institute, hotels and lodging are the least energy and water-efficient buildings in commercial use.


Hotelbeds sees 30pc hike in sustainable travel

Hotelbeds has reported a surge in the number of travellers booking eco-friendly hotels.

Its latest data shows that 30 per cent more people have actively chosen to book properties that are part of the TravelTech company’s Green Hotels programme over the past 12 months compared to the previous year. Criteria for Green Hotels properties, as certified by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, includes sustainable management and cultural impacts.

“Travellers are much more conscious of their carbon footprint and impact on the environment than ever before,” said Nicolas Huss, Hotelbeds’ CEO. “We started the Green Hotels progamme in 2000 with 15,000 properties and its since grown to more than 37,000 hotels, representing over 20 per cent of our business as more people actively seek to protect the planet while also exploring it.”