CHP sector an ideal fit for the hospitality industry

There is a growing awareness of the suitability of combined heat and power as a solution for the hospitality sector.

It was a theme explored during the recent COGEN Europe event in Brussels with Chris Marsland, Technical Director at UK-based ENER-G delivering a presentation on the subject in a session entitled, ‘Emerging Opportunities for the CHP sector’.

“With the national living wage going up, pressure on wafer thin margins is getting worse in the hospitality business. Energy efficiency is a top issue for the hospitality sector as it ranks in the top five for carbon emissions with annual energy costs of à‚£1.5bn,” Marsland told the audience in the Belgian capital.
Chris Marsland with ENER-G CHP system
Marsland pointed to a growing awareness by potential customers about their green credentials, relative over the last five year and added that increasing energy prices ‘are only going to grow this market.’

As a starting point CHP makes sense for hotels due to their 24/7 demand for heat and electricity. But it is in the area of behavioural change that much potential can be seen, not just on the part of the hotels but also their prospective customers.

“Behaviour change doesn’t always resonate well with leisure and hotel customers but with little or no capital investment behavioural change alone can save 20 per cent off energy bills.

He said evidence was growing that people were choosing holiday accommodation based on the green credentials of the hotels offering to host them.

“There are programmes to help travellers choose green hotels and Trip Advisor has a green leader programme for hotels.”

“There is still the low hanging fruit, with LED lighting and so on, but there is only so much you can do with bulbs before you start thinking about capital investment.”

“The EU has a 20 per cent energy saving target by 2020 ” the targets become even stricter after 2020 when the commitments made on the global deal on climate change kick in.”

By way of example Marsland demonstrated the benefits accrued by the ownership of the London-based Imperial Group’s Royal, National, President and Tavistock hotels. The flexibility (to match the load better) associated with a small heating scheme via two shared plant rooms saved EUR51,000 a year in electricity costs, as well as 75 tonnes of carbon.

Meanwhile the Crowne Plaza Liverpool Airport hotel “a grade 2 listed building that had issues when placing CHP installations still saw a financial saving of EUR13,000 a year.

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