Gabriel Escarrer, chief executive of Meliá Hotels International, has announced that the company will seek to eliminate all single-use plastics in all its hotels within the year.
The move will see plastic bottles, cups, bags, straws and coasters immediately replaced by reusable items, with the elimination saving more than 15 tonnes of CO2 emissions generated by waste disposal per year.
Over 22 million plastic bottles were disposed of at Meliá Hotels International properties globally during 2017.
The decision to eliminate these will significantly reduce plastic pollution from the company, as well as serving to raise awareness of the issue among the 30 million customers who visit Meliá Hotels International properties each year.
The company has drawn up a roadmap to replace single-use plastics with biodegradable or environmentally-friendly alternatives before the end of 2018.
Escarrer said: “Great customer experiences have to be compatible with respect for the planet.
“Plastic pollution is a global challenge which affects all destinations and tourism business depends on the sustainability of destinations, something of which we are very aware at Meliá Hotels International as an international leader in resort hotels.
“Combatting climate change and reducing emissions has been part of our strategy for years, with well-established energy efficiency programmes in hotels and agreements with suppliers regarding the exclusive use of renewable energy.
“The company has also taken further steps toward combating climate change by assuming the commitments defined at the Paris Climate Summit.”