Mumbai, 09 February 2022: Sustainability has always been an important part of the culture at Club Mahindra, the flagship brand of Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Limited. As the Indian Hospitality Industry shifts its focus to becoming more sustainable, companies across the nation have been taking numerous measures in this regard. Club Mahindra has shown its commitment to the cause ever since its inception and has demonstrated it yet again by being India’s first hospitality company that has signed both RE100 (Renewable Energy) and EP100 (Energy Productivity).
Mahindra Holidays has committed to become carbon neutral by 2040 and is the first hospitality company in the country to have signed both RE100 (Renewable Energy) and EP100 (Energy Productivity), led by The Climate Group — setting targets to run on 100% renewable energy by 2050 and to double its energy productivity by 2030. It has also committed to the EP 100 cooling challenge for which it monitors the efficiency of air conditioning systems and implements energy efficient solutions.
Another noteworthy initiative that the company is a part of, is the Science Based Target Initiative, which requires it to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to limit global temperature rise to below two degrees Celsius.
Commenting on the countless efforts of the company Miguel Munoz, Chief Resort Officer, Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Limited, shared “Ever since the inception of the company, we have aimed to uplift the people and the environment that our resorts are associated with, and we will continue to do so. It is a matter of pride to share that we were the first Hospitality Company that has Signed Both RE100 (Renewable Energy) and EP100 (Energy Productivity), a demonstration of our unwavering commitment to sustainability. The importance of sustainable tourism has increased a great deal in the past 2 years, with the COVID-19 putting the priorities of mankind into perspective. We at Mahindra Holidays recognize that this is the need of the hour, and we remain deeply committed to the cause.”
To meet these targets, the brand has incorporated a host of sustainable practices at its resorts in the areas of solar installations, energy saving, water conservation, waste recycling and biodiversity.
In the year 2020-21, Club Mahindra’s focus continued to be on installation of solar power and hot water generators. Solar power is streaming in at seven of its resorts with 22 million kWh generated during the year; another five resorts will be added in 2021-22. Outdoor solar lights were installed in landscaped areas. Other energy saving initiatives have been systematically implemented at resorts as a part of its 26-point programme, including the replacing of diesel boilers with heat pump for hot water generation in 10 resorts resulting in 67% less diesel consumption as compared to last year; and installation of inverter ACs and energy saving BLDC fans.
With respect to water conservation, six MHRIL resorts were ‘water positive’ at the end of 2020-21. The utilisation of rainwater increased considerably in 2020-21 and similar actions will be implemented in another 19 resorts by 2024. Water consumption has reduced by 156 million litres compared to last year, and 55% of total water consumed by the resorts was recycled in 2020-21.
Waste recycling is an extremely vital component of sustainability. In this regard, the company embarked on the ‘Zero Waste to Landfill’ (ZWL) programme last year with its Virajpet resort becoming India’s first ZWL resort. Three more resorts at Munnar, Madikeri and Varca were certified as ZWL resorts in 2020-21.
Promotion of Biodiversity & Environment Preservation
Promoting the biodiversity of our beautiful nation is another critical element of sustainable tourism, and Mahindra Holidays has organic gardens at several of its resorts: Kanha, Munnar, Corbett, Poovar, Manali, Cherai, Dharamshala, Thekkady, Kandaghat and Mahabaleshwar to promote the same. It also has butterfly gardens at Puducherry and Ashtamudi. During the year, biodiversity assessments were carried out at Virajpet and Madikeri.
The most critical factor of sustainability is the preservation of the environment. 46,960 trees were planted in 2020-21 as a part of ‘Mahindra Hariyali’ — a tree plantation initiative of the Mahindra Group — taking the total trees planted to 470,286 since the beginning of the project in 2010- 11. Under its ‘Jal Jivan’ campaign — a major initiative for water conservation and provision of safe drinking water — the company carries out projects for rejuvenation of water bodies, rainwater harvesting, water access, chlorination, and installation of RO water purifiers. In 2020-21, it installed rooftop rainwater harvesting structures in 10 schools in Udaipur district which will benefit 2,120 students.
Promoting Local Communities
With respect to promoting the local communities that the brand has resorts in, MHRIL sponsored the education of 4,226 girls through the ‘Nanhi Kali’ project of KC Mahindra Education Trust, which provides academic and material support to underprivileged girls. Through project ‘Udaan’, it initiated a skill development and livelihood programme for 125 youth and 75 women; and supported three digital job fairs to help blue and grey collar workers find livelihood opportunities which achieved registration from 1,837 candidates and 194 businesses.
Healthcare and Sanitation
Healthcare and sanitation are critical concerns in a populous country like India, where a large percentage of people lack access to one or both these very basic human rights. To combat this, Mahindra Holidays installed a water treatment plant for drinking water near Lonavala, Maharashtra, benefitting 100 families. In addition to that, the company installed household sanitation units to 30 families in Raigad district of Maharashtra and also started an initiative to raise awareness and practical hands-on sessions on how to handle sudden cardiac arrest emergencies in Mumbai, Maharashtra.