Sustainable Development: 5 Initiatives to Reduce Energy and Water ConsumptionBy
Sunset Beach Club is committed to sustainable development and we have a policy of continuous research and development in this area. Jose Ignacio (We call him Nacho), our Hotel Technical Director is constantly looking for ways to reduce energy and water consumption; not an easy task in a building that is 25 years old! Our constant refurbishment programmes take into consideration our commitment to environmental factors and although we might not be able to progress at the speed we would like, we are definitely making headway!
I spoke to Nacho about our energy and water saving initiatives here at Sunset Beach Club and the following are 5 of the main ones:
1) We are gradually installing energy saving LED lamps in all common areas of the hotel: Entrance, first floor, buffet area, reception and more… These light-emitting diode lamps have the traits of long life expectancy- they can last up to 45 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs – and have relatively low energy use which reduces electric energy consumption. Apparently, this type of lighting can result in savings of up to 85% on electricity costs!
2) Installation of tap and shower flow regulators throughout the hotel (rooms and public toilets and facilities). This will lead to savings of up to6 litres of water per minute with no apparent reduction in quality; the result will be lower energy and water bills
3) The hot water that allows our guests to enjoy a nice warm shower – or bath -after a long day out is thanks, in part, to our 450m2 of solar panels located on the roof of the building; these panels allow us to heat and store more than 36.000 litres of hot water daily and reduces the work load on our main boilers by about 4 hours a day, even in the winter months.
4) Newly installed motion sensors have been placed in halls and corridors as part of the electrical installation. Again, this will have a significant impact on electricity consumption – and costs – especially at night.
5) This coming winter, we will be making a substantial investment by changing our present system of gas-oil generated burners to natural gas burners in our main boiler room; this will result in much more efficient and cleaner energy.
In addition to the above and as our “highlight” investment project, engineers from Caterpillar are designing a co-generation power station which will allow us to simultaneously generate both electricity and useful heat (for hot water, etc.) The design of this proposed co-generation system will include a heat recovery steam generator; a steam boiler that uses hot exhaust gases from the gas turbine in a combined heat and power plant to heat up water and generate steam. This steam in turn drives a steam turbine which will be used to generate electricity! Although in its early stages and yet to be fully approved, this project will undoubtedly be one of the most ambitious and potentially profitable – economically and environmentally – undertaken to date by our hotel.
It’s all exciting stuff and we’ll be sure to keep you updated on the progress of these sustainable development projects.