Sustainable production and consumption relates to the efficient use of resources, resource conservation and use of renewable sources. The indicators here focus on resource use in the hotel industry. Total annual resource use per hotel (median) is presented, in addition to intensity benchmarks for resource use per guest night and per square metre. Data are from EarthCheck.

Leading hotels are able to improve resource efficiency in the order of several percent per annum.

Several SDGs relate to sustainable production and consumption, including Goal 6 that focuses on water, Goal 7 that addresses energy, and Goal 12 that specifically deals with developing new patterns of production and consumption. Hotel resource use plays an important role in achieving these goals.

The indicators in the Dashboard measure the increase in efficiency per guest night for carbon emissons, energy use, water use and waste production. Data stem from EarthCheck certified businesses and the median of resource use across all businesses is calculated to provide a preliminary benchmark. Resource use is reported for carbon, energy, water and waste – both in total terms and as an intensity benchmark (per guest night and per square metre). Since the businesses used for the calculations are all environmentally certified they represent the ‘leading end of the spectrum’.


  • Total resource us per hotel is generally declining, i.e. an improvement can be seen across all resource types with the exception of a slight increase in carbon between 2016 and 2017 (3,588 tonnes of CO2 for the whole year).
  • Generation of waste has decline the most, showing the impact of waste reduction measures implemented at EarthCheck certified hotels.
  • Energy use per guest night has improved steadily, but only in the order of 1-2% per annum. It has increased slightly in 2017 to 242 MJ compared with 224 MJ in 2016.
  • Carbon emissions per square metre have increased slightly from 128 MJ to 140 MJ in 2017, indicating that a green ceiling of ‘low hanging fruit’ might have been reached for some hotels.
  • Water use has somewhat been reduced per per guest night and square metre over the years, although consumption levels are still generally quite high at 658 litres per guest night.
  • The average hotel visitor generated about 1.9 litres of waste per guest night.