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Saturday, May 25, 2024

SM Hotels and Conventions Corp. properties back phase out of single use plastics

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SMHCC properties fully support the United Nations Environment Program's campaign to phase out Single-Use Plastics (SUPs) in the tourism sector.

Park Inn by Radisson North Edsa's take-out packaging

It has partnered with the Philippine Center for Environmental Protection and Sustainable Development Inc. (PCEPSDI) under the Transforming Tourism Value Chains (TVC) Project and with the Department of Tourism through its sustainability thrust Save Our Spots.

“We are glad of the continuous support of SMHCC in our initiatives towards the promotion and implementation of sustainable tourism practices in the Philippines, specifically this campaign to reduce problematic single use plastics. We commend SMHCC in their continuous and creative efforts to minimize our carbon and plastic footprint on the planet,” said June Alvarez, president and executive director of PCEPSDI.

Pico Sands Hotel's biodegradable take-out packaging

Pico Sands Hotel and Taal Vista Hotel replaced their single use amenities (shampoo and body wash) with refillable 30ml bottles and shifted to biodegradable take- out packaging instead of microwavable plastic containers. The said properties have also stopped utilizing individual water bottles in guest rooms. As a substitute, glass pitchers, which can be refilled outside the room, are made available.

Conrad Manila employed eco bags for guests’ laundry and slipper bags, coupled with the use of rice straws and wooden stirrers in their restaurants.

Radisson Blu Cebu advocated using paper straws, which are being served only upon request. Similarly, the packaging of the hotel’s pastry products has shifted to biodegradable full paper boxes. Collectively, all Park Inn by Radisson properties in Clark, North Edsa, Iloilo, and Davao matched the said efforts with their “Refuse the Straw” or “Skip the Straw” campaigns, together with their strict adherence to using brown bag and environment-friendly packaging for their takeaway food.

SMX Convention Center likewise diverted its SMX water bottles to a sustainability partner for upcycling.

Radisson Blu Cebu's paper straw

“Our partnership with PCEPSDI affirms SMHCC’s relentless commitment to the road towards sustainability not only for the present but also for future generations. As stewards of our ‘common home,’ SMHCC properties remain proactive in the efficient and responsible use of our resources that leads to operational productivity and to protecting the environment significantly,” said Peggy Angeles, Executive Vice President of SMHCC.

According to the UN, globally, around one million plastic drinking bottles are being purchased every minute, while five trillion single-use plastic bags are used every year.

Consequently, up to eight million tons of plastic are being swept to the world’s oceans annually, which in turn adversely affect marine biodiversity, communities, and wildlife. To add to this, recent reports from the UN reveal that the COVID-19 pandemic worsened plastic pollution due to the heightened use and disposal of single-use times, which include medical face masks, plastic gloves, hand sanitizer bottles, and food packaging, among others.

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