Our work on sustainability goes back several years and is under constant development.
1997: HOW IT ALL STARTED
The environmental movement was strong in Sweden. Needless to say, we were quick to become involved. At the same time, we had a need to gain control in areas such as waste and transportation. For this reason, we established an environmental group. This marked the start of our sustainability journey.
Over the years, we have made continuous improvements in the areas of transportation and waste, for instance through consolidated shipments and our own recycling centre. The environmental gains increase with every year.
1998-2004: ISO 14001 certification
To help structure our newly initiated environmental efforts, we gained ISO 14001 certification. Six years later we gave up this certification and looked around for one that was more suited to our business.
2008-2015: awarded the gothenburg environmental diploma
We further strengthened our sustainability efforts by gaining the Gothenburg Environmental Diploma (instead of ISO). This means that the Gothenburg City Environmental Administration performs an annual audit on site at our facility to ensure that we meet the requirements for the Diploma.
2008: gothenburg rescue mission
In addition to donating funds to good causes, we believe in being actively involved in and supporting these causes in the long term. For this reason, we work locally in order to monitor the effects of our efforts. We have been collaborating with the Gothenburg Rescue Mission since 2008. Our restaurants donate leftover food to their café on Vasagatan. Vegetables from the Rescue Mission’s farm in Björlanda are served in our restaurants.
Every December, the pile of Christmas gifts in our hotel lobby grows bigger. In collaboration with the Rescue Mission, we collect gifts which are donated to children and young people in need.
2009: environmental care 2.0
After working with environmental care for 12 years, we wanted to give even higher priority to environmental care throughout our business. We appointed a sustainability manager to lead the work and define our focus areas for sustainability.
2010: accessibility database
We keep a constantly updated Accessibility Database which gives visitors details of which rooms are equipped for special needs and which needs they cater for.
2011: wind power
Since 2011, we have been using wind power to fuel all our operations.
2012: Web-based chemicals system
Our chemicals system helps to control all chemicals used in-house and phase out chemicals that are not environmentally friendly.
West Coast restaurant opened. The West Coast restaurant in our hotel lobby serves many organic and locally grown foods.
2013: introduction of carbon-offset shipments
We introduced carbon offsetting of all our own shipments. We also offer our exhibitors carbon-offset shipment options.
We took charge of our internal waste management.
2014: introducing our bees
We installed beehives on our roof, which contribute to biodiversity through pollination and produce delicious honey for the restaurants in Gothia Towers.
Our kitchen equipment is fuelled with biogas generated from our food waste.
2015: sustainability becomes a group strategy
We further strengthened our focus on sustainability. In 2015, sustainability became one of our five main strategies in all our operations.
In January 2015 we began a collaboration with Friends of El Sistema in Gothenburg. El Sistema is a non-profit organisation with roots in Venezuela, which uses music to create positive social change for children. El Sistema currently conducts activities in nine areas of Gothenburg. 1,600 children in Gothenburg come into contact with El Sistema every week through its activities in preschools, schools and after-school activity centres, and El Sistema is growing with each passing term.
Now we only sell carbon-offset shipments
BREEAM is the world’s most widely used environmental assessment system for buildings. Gothia Towers is the largest hotel in Europe so far to be certified according to BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method).
All our employees completed an online sustainability course tailored to our operations.
Now we are certified according to ISO 20121. This standard is specially designed for the events industry and was used for the first time at the Olympic Games in London in 2012. This certification is an international seal of quality that guarantees our customers a venue that meets their requirements.