In its commitment to the Planet, NH Hotel Group works to minimize its impact on climate change, increase the efficiency of resources and develop more sustainable services, reducing thus the Company’s environmental footprint with a responsible consumption of natural resources.

NH Hotel Group is a company committed to the wellbeing of its guests and efficient management of the available resources in the environment where the Group’s hotels are located. The Company is aware of the effects of its activity on the environment, and works to prevent and anticipate possible environmental contingencies, as well as to integrate sustainability in all its processes, striving to reduce its impacts.

The Company’s environmental management is based on the identification and annual review of the main environmental impacts it could cause through the environmental risk map. In 2019 the risks that have been identified as the most significant are those deriving from climate change, water shortage and the consequences of new European legislation on single-use plastics. Atmospheric pollution, including noise and light pollution, the consumption of raw materials and the protection of biodiversity did not result as significant after this analysis.

The Company’s main commitments to the environment are set out in the Corporate Responsibility Plan 2017-2019, specifically in the NH ROOM4 PLANET pillar, which highlights two major projects focused on the prevention and reduction of carbon emissions and in promoting sustainability among customers.

To comply with the Company’s commitment to the environment, the Sustainability Policy establishes the principles of action for the entire organization in relation to this matter.

NH Hotel Group Environmental Sustainability Policy

We apply criteria of efficiency and sustainability in all processes and decisions with an impact on the environment, using innovation, ecoefficiency and renewable energies, including the prevention of pollution, consuming resources efficiently and reducing the volume of waste we generate.

We ensure compliance with legal and other requisites that affect the organization, making a commitment to continuous improvement in the environmental aspects identified for our activity.

We promote sustainable and environmentally friendly practices among our customers and suppliers, developing actions that contribute to improving the environments of the destinations where we operate.

We collaborate with the Administration and with other entities in the sector in the development and promotion of sustainable tourism, contributing to research and raising awareness about the environment and energy efficiency.

During 2020, we will work on updating the Environmental Sustainability Policy to make sure that it sets out the new commitments acquired by the Group.



Environmental risks are identified on the Company’s risk map and contemplated in the NH ROOM4 Planet pillar.

For the management of the environmental strategy, NH Hotel Group has a Corporate Environment Department which reports to the Vice President of Engineering, Maintenance and the Environment. Furthermore, with the aim of preventing and reducing environmental risks and impacts, teams from different areas, both at corporate and business unit and hotel level, work in coordination on three main areas:

  1. Energy efficiency: Improvement in the use of energetic resources through changes in equipment and adjustments of systems in buildings. In 2019, a total of €6.3M has been invested in improving the Company’s energy efficiency
  2. Environmental certification: Implementation of relevant and recognized environmental certifications in the NH Hotel Group portfolio
  3. Control of consumption rates: Exhaustive and rigorous supervision of the measures implemented in relation to energy consumption, carbon footprint and water consumption

NH Hotel Group makes investments in environmental activities that are stated at cost and capitalized as a higher cost of fixed assets or inventories in the year in which they are incurred.

Expenses derived from the protection and improvement of the environment are recorded in the income statement in the year in which they incur, independently of when the associated monetary or financial flow takes place.

Provisions relating to likely or certain liabilities, ongoing litigation and ongoing damage compensation or obligations relating to the environment, the amount of which has not been determined, not covered by the Company’s insurance policies, are set up at the start of the liability or obligation that determines a possible compensation or payment.


The Sustainability Plan defines six key goals, based on which the Company makes decisions affecting all areas to achieve these goals.

(1) The figures analysed follow the Company’s consolidation criteria.
(2) Energy savings compared to 2013.
(3) Cumulative energy savings since 2013.
(4) Energy, water and emissions ratios may undergo variations in future reports according to the definition of the scope.

The two specific projects established to meet NH Hotel Group’s environmental goals are the Green Savings Project and the Green Hotel Project.


Focused on obtaining savings in the Company’s operating costs, as well as in energy efficiency, to ensure savings in resources: water, energy and other expenses.

To keep exhaustive and rigorous control of the energy consumption, carbon footprint and water consumption measures, NH Hotel Group uses the Sustain Focus platform, from which the sustainability strategy indicators are monitored. This is an online system to which almost all the Company’s hotels have access that permits reporting, control, monitoring and traceability of the indicators and of water and energy consumption and costs.

Commitment to the fight against Climate Change

Since 2010 NH Hotel Group has participated in the CDP global climate change sustainability index. This independent non-profit organization analyses the environmental performance of companies.

NH Hotel Group will reduce its carbon emissions by 20% by 2030

NH Hotel Group has become the first Spanish hotel company to establish emission reduction targets that have been scientifically validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – the leading alliance and driving force in the business sector against climate change with the participation of CDP, the UN Global Compact, World Resources Institute and World Wide Fund for Nature.

The Company has made the commitment to reduce its carbon emission through its value chain by 20% by 2030, thus avoiding the emission of more than 70,000 metric tons of CO2 into the atmosphere. Setting this target marks out NH Hotel Group’s roadmap towards a significant reduction in the carbon footprint of its activity in the coming years, aligned with the goal set out in the Paris Agreement to limit the increase in global temperature to less than 2ºC, and join the efforts being made globally towards the transition to a low-carbon economy.

Achieving these goals involves, among many other measures:

  • An exhaustive analysis of the opportunities to continue working with suppliers and reduce the carbon footprint together.
  • Continuing to contract green energy and reinforcing energy efficiency in the hotels..

As the goal for the first year, new indirect emission sources in the Company’s value chain will start to be measured. In 2019, the suppliers with the largest carbon footprint have been identified and work will be done with them to improve reporting channels and to seek alignment in order to reduce emissions in the value chain.

logo cdp

NH Hotel Group’s global sustainability strategy was recognized by CDP Climate Change in 2019, which gave the Group a rating of B in its annual ranking. With this score, NH Hotel Group once again sees acknowledgement of its vision to place sustainability as a strategic value of the Company, which has acted as a lever of value across the entire Group for more than a decade.

Mitigation measures for Climate Change

From 2019, NH Hotel Group began managing the risks derived from Climate Change as part of the risk management model, after Climate Change was identified as one of the emerging risks for the Company.

NH Hotel Group aims to become more resource efficient and reduce its carbon footprint. To this end, the Annual Investment Plan, approved by the Management Committee, and the commitment to green energy promote improvements in adaptation to climate change.

NH Hotel Group is actively involved in several initiatives that contribute to reducing the emissions generated by the hotels and the activities that take place in them. Thus, every hotel in the portfolio has carbon footprint reduction targets and has a record of historic data to provide evidence of the reduction.

The Company also participates in different forums and projects to promote the fight against climate change and the reduction of carbon emissions.

Initiatives for the fight against climate change
Participation in Work Groups
  • Spanish Green Growth Group
    NH Hotel Group has been part of the Spanish Green Growth Group since its creation in 2016. It is a public-private collaboration platform for joint progress in the fight against climate change and towards a low-carbon economy.Along with 30 other Spanish multinationals, and medium-sized companies, NH Hotel Group has signed a proposal to demand a Climate Change and Energy Transition Law “ambitious as a source of opportunities”, in a pioneering initiative in Spain, coordinated by the Spanish Group for Green Growth (GECV). The group is present at many events promoting an urgent ecological transition.
  • Working Group on Water and Carbon Footprint of the International Tourism Partnership (ITP)
    In 2019, ITP and its members have continued to work on their four common objectives; two of them being carbon emissions and water scarcity.NH Hotel Group has participated in the working groups with the objective of complementing the individual targets of each company in the sector by collaboration and joint work to multiply the impact of the actions. One of the key topics addressed is the fight against single-use plastics.
Global initiatives to raise awareness about the reduction of carbon emissions
  • • World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Earth Hour 2019
    For the eleventh consecutive year, NH Hotel Group took part in this global initiative to raise awareness about Climate Change. The Group’s hotels participated by switching off the lighting of their façades for one hour, and organized numerous activities to involve customers, such as acoustic concerts, candlelight dinners, menus prepared under a low energy consumption approach, etc. In 2019 more emphasis has been placed on this initiative, about which the hotels have given much more information.
  • ROOM4 Planet COP25 week
    Coinciding with the COP25 in Madrid, NH Hotel Group has carried out awareness-raising actions about climate change in both hotels and offices. For example, the canteen in Madrid’s corporate office eliminated meat from the menu once a week and intends to maintain this initiative throughout the entire year.
Reconocimientos por la reducción de emisiones
  • NH Hotel Group initiative selected as one of the 101 actions for the climate
    NH Hotel Group presented its initiative to reduce its emission by 20%, backed by the Science Based Target Initiative, to the “Community for Climate” platform. This initiative has been selected as one of the 101 most inspiring and most impactful business initiatives of the year.
Energy efficiency plan

This plan groups together “energy efficiency” projects, considering all those that can improve energy consumption ratios in the hotels, as well as the associated costs:

  • Changes in equipment, where the replacement involves greater efficiency: water pumps, minibars, washing equipment, heating and air-conditioning, boilers, coolers…
  • Investments related to control of installations: building energy management systems, update of meters, improvements in lighting…
  • Actions on building façades that represent improvements in the enclosure and insulation
  • Additionally, in 2019 the Company has created a new CAPEX line designed for projects where not only economic returns are sought but also environmental returns. Some of these projects are elimination of fossil fuels and increase of renewable energy.


With all the above, in the course of 2019 projects that improve energy efficient valued at 6.3 million euros have been carried out.


In projects to Imrpove energy efficienc
in 2019

The Energy Efficiency Manual was also created and distributed in 2019. This is a key tool setting out the best available practice in terms of improving efficiency for all key elements in the hotels.

Environmental certification program

NH Hotel Group has individual certifications for 40.2% of the hotels in its portfolio.


certified hotels*

* Some NH Hotel Group hotels hold several certifications and therefore the final numbers correspond only to the number of hotels. The scope encompasses all the hotels in the portfolio.


These certifications are recognized globally. Some of them are specific for the tourism sector, and approved by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, the leading body.



NH Hotel Group also has hotels certified under the ISO 14001 environmental management system and the ISO 50001 energy efficiency system for accommodation, restaurant services, meetings and events.


Hotels with ISO 14001


hotels with ISO 50001 certification

At the end of 2019, 42% of the hotels in Germany, Spain and Italy hold ISO 14001 -a total of 92 hotels- or ISO 50001 -25 hotels-.

In 2019, 8 hotels obtained a sustainability recognition for the first time, bringing a total of 149 certified hotels out of the 361 hotels in the portfolio. It should be noted that 4 hotels in Colombia achieved Green Key certification in 2019.

Furthermore, 172 NH Hotel Group hotels obtained the Green Leaders badge from TripAdvisor, with a total of 46% of the Company’s hotels holding this recognition.

Some of these globally recognized certifications and endorsements are: BREEAM, LEED, Green Key, Hoteles+Verdes, ISO 14001 or ISO 50001.


New hotels added to the certification program in 2019

* All new certified hotels belong to the consolidation perimeter (hotels under ownership or lease)

Waste management and circular economy

NH Hotel Group has implemented a system of waste separation at the point of origin in all its hotels to permit recycling. The types of waste separated are paper and cardboard, glass, used oil, packaging (plastic, cartons, tins, etc.) and organic. This system, on which employees receive training on how to use it properly, permits the recovery of materials for recycling and subsequent valuation. Hazardous waste is separated according to the legal requisites of each region. Withdrawn furniture and fittings that are in good condition during refurbishment processes may be given away to employees or donated to local organizations.



In 2019, with the aim of promoting the circular economy and encouraging recycling, reuse and other forms of recovery, NH Hotel Group has relaunched its CORK2CORK project. This project is a pioneering sustainable initiative in the European hotel sector, which NH Hotel Group has developed together with the leading company in cork coverings and stoppers, Amorim.

The aim of the initiative is to recover and recycle used cork stoppers from bottles in its hotels to give them a new use by turning them into material for covering or insulation that can be used in the group’s rooms. This insulating material reduces noise pollution and the needs for artificial heating in the rooms, thus improving their energy efficiency. In Spain and Italy, 55 hotels participate in this initiative and collect cork stoppers.

Thanks to this initiative, the Company received the “2019 Touristic Excellences Award”.


Fight against food waste

NH Hotel Group is aware that due to food wastage, it is not only these resources that are wasted but also others associated to food production or transport. The origin of food wastage is generated in the process of preparing each of the F&B services.

To minimize the impact of wastage, the hotels apply processes, technical data sheets and preparation standards in the production chain. These are applied based on a forecast of needs (orders), preparation, conservation and turnover of all products, also guaranteeing the best quality.

In 2019 pilot projects have been carried out with companies such as Winnow, which combines the waste generated in kitchens with artificial intelligence, identifying the type of waste being thrown out, at what time, what quantity, and providing useful information to reduce food wastage.



This project seeks to offer value to customers through sustainable actions, focusing on the innovative attributes that improve brand perception.


Green Energy

NH Hotel Group is a Company that is committed to reducing its carbon footprint and therefore believes in renewable energy.

The consumption of renewable or green energy was available in 2019 in 96% of the hotels in Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Belgium and Luxemburg, covering 62% of the total electricity consumed by the Group’s hotels in Europe.

Customers are also involved and made aware of this with specific services to reduce emissions.


NH Hotel Group services to reduce emissions

Eco-friendly meetings and events:

The Group’s hotels strive to involve customers during their events, offering the “Eco-friendly Meetings & Events” service and the carbon footprint calculation service for the events and meetings held. An emission offset service is also offered.

Sustainable mobility:

During customers’ stays and sightseeing trips, the Company offers mobility services such as carsharing or bicycle hire. Currently there are more than 75 hotels that offer bicycle hire services, as well as charging points for electric cars installed in 46 hotels.

In 2019, the initiative to offer electric mobility charging services continued, increasing the number of hotels that offer this service. In January 2020, a new charging point for electric cars was installed in the Head Office in Madrid (January 2020). NH Hotel Group has had a global sustainable mobility standard since 2014.

Hotel recharging points are currently being upgraded with improved technology to achieve faster recharging adapted to new vehicles.

Commitment to reduce single-use plastics

Although the consumption of raw materials is not an aspect that has been significant for NH Hotel Group in its analysis of environmental risks, European legislation on single-use plastic does have a relevant impact.

Accordingly, the Company has established a plan to eliminate disposable single-use plastic articles from its standards for all brands in the portfolio. Thus, the new standards envisage an annual reduction of more than 31 million single-use plastic articles in the Group’s hotels. As a first step, NH Hotel Group has signed up to the commitment to eliminate plastic drinking straws in all its hotels. This initiative means that 1.1 million plastic straws per year will cease to be used in the Group’s bars and restaurants.

Starting from 2020, articles such as plastic cups in rooms, laundry bags, slipper packaging, sweet wrappers, among others, will disappear and will be replaced with more sustainable alternatives.

Customer satisfaction with sustainability

NH Hotel Group measures customer satisfaction with regard to sustainability.

The 10 hotels in NH Hotel Group most highly rated by customers for sustainability
Key environmental initiatives by Business Unit in 2019

Southern Europe Business Unit

  • “No me tapones” campaign
  • The NH Ciudad de Zaragoza and the NH Sport collaborate in the “NO ME TAPONES” campaign, promoted by NK cultural management, a project that collects plastic bottle caps to finance the design, creation and/or purchase of musical instruments adapted for disabled individuals.This multidisciplinary project combines music therapy, composition, programming, electronic engineering, physiotherapy… in order to develop adapted musical instruments that manage to boost the skills of individuals with functional diversity.
  • NH Collection Gran Hotel Calderón: environmental leader
  • The NH Collection Gran Hotel Calderón, an environmental leader, has created a committee called NHope to organise actions and events aimed at becoming a more sustainable hotel. It has also volunteered itself as pilot hotel for the Southern Europe Business Unit for environmental projects.
    • To prevent, reduce or repair carbon emissions, the hotels has installed charging points for electric vehicles in the car park.
    • To reduce the use of plastic, reusable bottles were given to all employees in 2019, and water coolers were installed in several places so that they could be refilled. Plastic straws were also removed from the bar, plastic bottles in the gym have been replaced by a drinking fountain, single-use plastic cups have been replaced by reusable plastic cups and the NH Collection sticker on newspapers has been replaced with a stamp.
    • To encourage correct separation of waste, recycling bins have been installed in the offices.
    • To combat food wastage, containers have been implemented so that customers who do not finish their meals in the restaurant can take away the leftovers.

Americas Business Unit: Argentina

  • “Earth Menu”
    During the week before Earth Hour, the NH Collection Buenos Aires Lancaster hotel offered the “Earth Menu”, a menu featuring dishes that did not use electricity or gas in their preparation, and which was very well received by customers. The menu was promoted with a message intended to raise awareness about the need to reduce emissions.
  • Study of food wastage
    Los hoteles de Buenos Aires están participando en un estudio de la Facultad de Agronomía de la Universidad de Buenos Aires, que consiste en la medición y muestreo de los residuos de cocina, para identificar oportunidades de mejora para la separación y reducción del desperdicio de alimentos.
  • Annual tree planting
    In May the hotels in Buenos Aires carried out the annual tree planting in the Costanera Sur Ecological Reserve.


Northern Europe Business Unit

  • Free-range eggs
    NH Hotel Group is analysing animal welfare requisites by promoting the use of eggs laid by free range hens. This initiative was implemented in hotels in northern Europe, which currently use free-range eggs in their preparations.
Other notable initiatives

The Company continues to work on its new Strategic Plan that will start to be implemented during 2020. This Plan maintains the principal lines of the previous plan, with the fundamental pillar “NH ROOM4 Planet” to highlight relevant issues such as: climate change, energy efficiency, the purchase of green energy and value chain management.

Along these lines, the Environment Department will work with the Procurement team and will be responsible for combining efforts and achieving synergies in order to meet the targets approved by the Science Based Target initiative, aligned with the Paris Agreement.

The Group has not set noise reduction targets, but it is concerned with carrying out proper noise management to ensure the rest and wellbeing of guests, and to collaborate in favour of peaceful co-existence with the neighbours where the hotels are located.

NH Hotel Group does not carry on its activity in protected natural areas. However, the Company has a range of measures and initiatives in place to preserve and restore biodiversity in the areas in which it does operate.

  • Sustainable fishing
    The Company’s hotels promote sustainable fishing through legal compliance with the consumption of species and responsible procurement of these products.
  • Urban vegetable gardens
    CUrban vegetable gardens, grown in areas adjoining some of the Company’s hotels, enhance the landscape and gastronomic value of dishes while reducing the environmental impact by reducing the need to transport these products.

The NH Collection Royal Medellín (Colombia) takes care of an ecological vegetable garden where aromatic herbs such as parsley, thyme, mint, rosemary, peppermint, basil, oregano, etc. are grown. These herbs, which are free from pesticides and have a high nutritional value, are used in the hotel kitchen. This hotel cares for the green area around its property, favouring the habitat of numerous animal species and maintaining the connection passageway between natural areas. This green area is open for guests to enjoy, as well as favouring the reduction in noise and pollutants.

The NH Collection Royal Hacienda in Bogotá (Colombia), also has a small vegetable garden in its garden area where aromatic plans are grown that are also used in the hotel’s kitchen.

In Italy, the NH Collection Piazza Carlina), NH Milano Congress Centre and NH Torino Centro also have vegetable gardens with aromatic plants; and the NH Orio al Serio has another garden where lettuces and tomatoes are grown.

In turn, the NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi (Italy), on the Amalfi coast, has a garden in which aromatic herbs, vegetables and citrus fruits are grown to be used in the kitchen and in the cosmetics for the hotel’s spa (aloe vera and lavender). Customers can experience this garden through a trail, such as the meditation trail, which consists of visiting the five terraces it currently features: vegetable garden, rose terrace, monks’ walk, botanic terrace and relaxation terrace.

  • Hotels for bees
    Conscious of the limited space in cities for biodiversity and aware of the critical situation of bees in Europe, five of the Group’s hotels continue to provide a home for bees on their roofs in a way that is safe for customers. These hotels are: NH Wien City (Austria), NH Berlin Alexanderplatz (Germany), NH Potsdam (Germany), NH Köln Altstadt (Germany) and NH Collection Barbizon Palace (the Netherlands).
    The team at the NH Collection Madrid Abascal has created the first pilot ecological canteen for employees at the hotel. This project consisted of renovating the staff canteen to create a completely sustainable space, including criteria for the election of sustainable material. This space has been used to create awareness about climate change and sustainability among the hotel’s employees.Some of the improvements that have been included are the recovery of materials to create shelves, giving priority to FSC certified wooden materials, replacing the lighting with LED technology, recovery of elements from other areas of the hotel in perfect condition for use in this space and the use of ecological paint for the walls.This initiative is also reflected in an operating instruction in the corporate management systems, so that his project will keep growing in other regions. In 2019, 3 sustainable canteens have been created, and the aim is that this project be extended to a total of 6 hotels in a first phase in 2020.



* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.


Since the creation of the first Sustainability Plan with 2007 as base year, measures have been implemented to save water consumption, such as the implementation of aerators and devices to reduce consumption in cisterns; the installation of innovative systems to recover and reuse water, the efficient purchase of devices such as washing lines in kitchens, as well as the training and awareness of employees and the redesign of operational guidelines and actions in kitchens and floors. In addition, from 2014 the progressive implementation of water efficient showers has begun, these achieve a 40% reduction in the volume of water due to their saving technology.

During 2019, work is underway to create an environmental awareness course that will reinforce these guidelines and actions. It will be available to all company employees in 2020.

* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.


* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.

* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.

* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.

Following the approval of the emissions reduction targets validated by SBTs, NH Hotel Group has estimated, following this methodology, a total of 389,862 Tn eq CO26 emissions in 2019.

* Scope 3 emissions published are not within the scope of the audit.



* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.

kg CO2/RN

* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.


* Information referring to NH Hotel Group figures for the consolidated perimeter.