Hotel energy audit
Conducting an energy audit is the best way to obtain a comprehensive view of the action required to improve the energy efficiency of a specific establishment. You must take this step if you want to find the technical solutions best suited to your establishment.
With an energy audit you can:
- identify problems that are easily remedied via simple and low-cost measures,
- list possible improvements and assess the potential energy savings,
- more easily set priorities, in particular for work requiring major investment (building insulation, heating equipment, etc.).
What organisations should I contact to obtain information and assistance for an energy audit?
*Various organisations can help you carry out an energy audit, either by
providing further information (list of service providers, etc.), or by furnishing financial aid. Among these organisations are: energy agencies, local authorities, chambers of commerce and industry, etc.
*It should also be noted that some service companies (energy suppliers, for example) have developed offers combining a hotel energy audit and a financing plan. These service providers can also provide financial assistance (in the form of low-cost loans, etc.).
It should also be noted that an energy audit can be combined with an assessment of carbon emissions due to energy use at the establishment (see below).
Other types of audits are also proposed to hotels: environmental audits, audits for environmental certification (European Ecolabel, for example), carbon assessments, etc. Here is some information to help you determine which kind of audit is most appropriate for your establishment.
*An environmental audit is broader in scope than an energy audit, as it covers all environmental aspects (waste, energy, water, eco-management and eco-marketing, etc.).
*An environmental audit is particularly useful as a first step in implementing an environmental strategy for the establishment. It will give you an overview of the hotel's environmental impact, and help set priorities.
Audit to obtain European Ecolabel certification
*The audit carried out for the purpose of obtaining the European Ecolabel (solution no. III) determines whether your hotel meets the European Ecolabel requirements. The following points are examined: energy consumption, water consumption, waste generation, use of chemical substances, and environmental management. For more information see the European Ecolabel website: www.ecolabel-tourism.eu
*A carbon assessment is a type of environmental audit. Assessing the quantity of greenhouse gas (GHG) emitted by the hotel's activity is the first step towards reducing these emissions. Activities and services that are assessed include:
-energy-consuming activities (laundry, air conditioning, etc.)
-transport of products and goods,
-travel by employees,
-construction of a building,
-end of life treatment of waste,
The overall impact of the establishment is generally expressed in tonnes carbon equivalent (t C eq) and tonnes CO2 equivalent (t CO2 eq).
*If you ask a consultant to carry out a carbon assessment of your hotel, be sure that the consultant uses a certified methodology that complies with the ISO 14064 standard, with the GHG Protocol and with European Directive 2003/87/EC pertaining to the CO2 emissions trading system.
Stages of an energy audit
* Site survey: during this survey building and equipment characteristics are examined and described in detail (use of space, state of buildings, state, use and maintenance of equipment, etc.) Energy consumption data are also studied.
* Data processing: data are analysed and calculated to interpret the raw data collected at the site. Points to be improved are identified, and costs and payback times are calculated for each measure.
* Recommendations: in conclusion of the audit a list of recommendations is communicated to the hotel management, which can then choose the measures to be taken.
Energy audit: approx. €10,000 (financial aid is possible; see below)
Rough payback time:
Depends on the measures implemented after the audit.
It should be noted that costs and payback times are highly dependent on the local setting and the initial situation of the hotel.
CO2 emissions reduction
Make informed choices:
• An energy audit is an essential step for identifying potential energy savings and for obtaining specific recommendations for your hotel. This step will enable you to make informed choices for future renovation work.
Prepare an effective action plan
Involve your employees:
• Audits can be a useful way to raise employees' awareness of the environmental impact of your hotel and encourage them to get involved in your action plan.
* Ease of implementation: Easy(*)
* Best time: can be put into place at any time. Recommended before carrying out renovation work in the hotel.
* Relevant initial situation No energy audit has been carried out for the hotel in the last five years.