The umbrella term ‘ESG’ (environmental, social and governance) is fairly new but the components of ESG are not and Dalata has always been committed to building a sustainable and ethical business. When we say sustainable, we mean sustainable in economic, environmental, and social terms. We are comfortable with the expectations of stakeholders concerning ESG because it is the right approach for a business that aims to practice good ethics, moreover it makes good business sense.
What is new is a global focus by governments and regulators on accountability for sustainability matters. That means, starting in 2025, Dalata will publish a report containing a variety of non-financial numbers that will be audited in the way the financial accounts are today. The figures will include things like carbon emissions, workforce diversity, employee turnover and training hours per employee by gender and employee category. The report will also describe the risks and opportunities arising from sustainability matters and the impact of our business activities on society and the environment. A balanced approach means that we prioritise action in areas where our activities have the greatest impact.
Our ESG priorities are aligned with the group’s business and risk management strategies. For example, we will reduce our greenhouse gas emissions because we see the fast approach of an era when buildings with high emissions will be less valuable. Similarly, investment in learning and development is essential if the group is to continue to expand in line with its ambition. Addressing risk, the health, safety and security of employees and guests are at the top of the list - always.
We have set stretching short-term targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions: 20% (compared to 2019) per room sold by 2026. We also aim to reduce food waste per sleeper by 15% within the same time frame. We are researching how, in the longer term, to align our emissions targets with the Paris Agreement objective of limiting the global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees by 2050. This is a very challenging target and our commitment to it will have a big impact on our strategic development and investment decisions in the future.
Investing in people has always been a fundamental priority for Dalata. The well-established Dalata Academy is at the centre of this investment, and it also includes promoting inclusion and diversity, employee wellness, good labour practises and the health, safety and security of our employees and guests. A third area of focus is on contributing positively to the communities in which we operate.
In 2020 the board created a sub-committee to oversee the company’s ESG response (its terms of reference are published on the company website). The committee is chaired by independent non-executive director, Gervaise Slowey, and meets for three to four hours each quarter. The committee holds the management team to account for its thinking and execution on sustainability matters. Tangible progress is visible through the attainment of Green Tourism’s Gold accreditation by all 48 hotels in 2022, up from 37 Bronze and seven Silver in 2019 and our receipt of the Investors in Diversity Silver accreditation earlier this year (Bronze in 2022).
Stay tuned to company announcements and these bulletins for progress updates in the months and years to come. If you want to learn more or influence our environmental and social impact, get involved with sustainability initiatives at your hotel or central office location.
Learning and development
Inclusion and diversity
Health, safety and security