June 15, 2024

Premier Inn parent publishes Net Zero plans

Whitbread PLC has published a comprehensive guide to its long-term decarbonisation plans.

The Whitbread Net Zero Transition Plan outlines its priorities, plans and projects to reach a newly-validated SBTi carbon target.

It will bring its directly controlled (Scope 1 and 2 emissions) to zero by 2040.

Whitbread also commits to reach net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across its value chain by FY2050.

The Plan includes a commitment to remove mains gas from over 800 Premier Inn hotels, using a wide range of initiatives to embed decarbonisation throughout the business. 

A first major step in the plan will see Whitbread undertake a ‘Net Zero Audit’ of all its sites, which is already being informed by work nearly completed on its first ‘all-electric’ Premier Inn, due to open its doors in Swindon later this year.

The hotel will be fully heated and powered by renewable electricity (grid and on-site), is built with market-leading insulation standards, energy efficient equipment and new water-heating technology, such as the Mitsubishi Q-ton heat pump.

The Whitbread Net Zero Transition Plan is being driven by the firm’s Force for Good sustainability programme. Its commitments and initiatives include 100% of new UK self-build developments constructed to net zero specifications from 2026.

Rosana Elias, Head of Sustainability, said: “We have been working on reducing our climate impact for a while and have successfully trialled the installation of air source heat pumps in 40 of our hotels and use solar power across over 20% of our estate. 

“We have taken a holistic approach – from how we build and operate our buildings and restaurants to how we power them through renewables, and we will work with suppliers, employees and customers to support a just transition. We want to provide sustainable and affordable accommodation and dining options, allowing our guests to make choices that align with their values without having to compromise on the product and service they receive.

“We don’t claim to have all the answers now, but our plan will evolve over time and evolve as the technologies and policies that we rely on for success develop further.”