New tourism energy efficiency initiative launched

Press Release – Tourism Industry Association

A new initiative to improve the competitiveness and environmental performance of tourism businesses by reducing energy consumption has been launched by the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA) and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation …New tourism energy efficiency initiative launched

A new initiative to improve the competitiveness and environmental performance of tourism businesses by reducing energy consumption has been launched by the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA) and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).

Small and medium sized tourism operators in Wellington and Auckland have been given the opportunity to take advantage of a free energy efficiency package worth the equivalent of $3000. The package includes a free energy assessment by an EcoSmart electrician and a subsidy to install the assessment’s recommendations. The initiative is a continuation of the Tourism Energy Efficiency Programme (TEEP), a partnership project between TIA and EECA launched in 2008 to provide practical assistance for tourism businesses to reduce their electricity consumption, fuel consumption and carbon emissions.

TIA Chief Executive Tim Cossar says most businesses can cut 20% off their energy costs – sometimes far more – with smarter energy use, and many of the measures they can implement come at little or no cost.

“Running an energy efficient business can also give tourism operators the edge over their competitors and position them as responsible operators, particularly important as New Zealand gears up for an influx of international visitors for Rugby World Cup 2011.

“Later in the year we will also offer subsidies for members to undertake driver training through the New Zealand Safe and Fuel Efficient Driving programme. These sorts of driver training programmes can result in fuel savings of up to 10%.”

Mike Underhill, Chief Executive of EECA says, “There is so much potential for businesses to improve their profitability through better energy management – we estimate as much as $2 billion worth of energy is wasted by the New Zealand business sector each year.

“As well as benefitting the individual businesses, there’s also a national benefit when our tourism operators can show they are committed to the ‘100% Pure’ brand, and good energy management is a real tangible way to show that commitment.”

Tim Cossar says the decision to extend the TEEP programme into its third year shows the tourism industry’s ongoing commitment to improving its environmental performance.

“New Zealand’s environment is our main tourism product. It is the primary reason that international visitors come here, it is important for domestic travellers and it underpins the visitor offering for thousands of tourism businesses.

“Tourism operators know they must respond to visitors’ environmental concerns by running their business more sustainably and by offering clients environmentally friendly products and experiences. TEEP is a practical project that is helping us to achieve this goal.”

Mr Cossar says he is pleased the energy efficiency package – which is being offered to a limited number of TIA members as a pilot project – is targeted at small and medium sized operators, given they make up about 80% of tourism industry businesses. The following companies have signed up to take advantage of the energy efficiency package: Auckland Super Shuttle™ MOTAT (Museum of Transport and Technology) Voyager New Zealand Maritime Museum Spookers Peace and Plenty Inn United Campervans Hotel DeBrett Piha: Black Sands Lodge Cotter House Tourism Auckland Wellington Kapiti Island Alive & Kapiti Nature Lodge Mountain Safety Council Ohtel Simply New Zealand About TEEP The Tourism Energy Efficiency Programme (TEEP) was launched by TIA and EECA in 2008, providing a strong incentive for tourism businesses to identify ways to save energy, improve profitability and help conserve the natural environment.

Initiatives completed in 2008 and 2009 included energy audits of 25 tourism businesses around the country and a fuel efficiency stocktake of tourist flight operators that identified ways to reduce fuel consumption and improve profit margins.

The energy audits of the 25 tourism operations found that in total they could potentially achieve:

dollar savings of $797,521 kWh savings of 6.8 million CO2 reductions of 1613 tonnes Of the energy efficiency measures recommended in the audits, 60% would have payback in less than 12 months and many would cost operators little or nothing to implement. Significant energy and cost savings have already been achieved by the businesses that took part in the TEEP energy audit scheme. Visit www.tianz.org.nz and click on project for more information.

Key Facts

• Tourism contributes more than 9% of gross domestic product (GDP) for New Zealand
• Tourism directly and indirectly employs nearly one in ten New Zealanders (184,800 total) full-time equivalent jobs
• Tourism in New Zealand is a $59 million per day industry. Tourism delivers $25 million in foreign exchange to the New Zealand economy each day of the year. Domestic tourism contributes almost another $34 million in economic activity every day.
• Total tourism expenditure reached $21.7 billion for the year ended March 2009. International visitor expenditure accounted for $9.3 billion or 16.4% of New Zealand’s foreign exchange earnings.
Visit www.tianz.org.nz for more information.

ENDS

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