“As a part of our sustainability program, we’re looking to remove all single-use disposable items made of plastic. In total, we’re taking approximately 1.3 million straws and 120 000 cocktail sticks out of circulation on a yearly basis. We are also replacing the plastic lids for our take away coffee mugs with biodegradable ones”, says Lena Bjurner, SVP HR & Sustainability at Scandic Hotels Group.
Plastic waste is one of our biggest environmental challenges. Different organisations around the world have estimated that there are over 150 million tons of plastic in the world’s oceans and that every year about one million birds and more than 100 000 sea mammals die from eating or getting tangled in plastic waste. Worse still, according to a new report by the UK Government Office for Science, the amount of plastic in our oceans is expected to triple between 2015 and 2025. By removing plastic straws, cocktail sticks and plastic coffee mug lids from its operations, Scandic hopes to inspire other hotel companies to do the same.
“This is a small but important step for Scandic to take. We are an industry leader in sustainability and rightly proud of how we pioneered the pick-up-your-towel behaviour and our fight to reduce food waste. These products that we are phasing out are fossil-fuel products that use up the planet’s resources and are difficult to recycle, making them extremely detrimental to our environment. It’s about time we stop using them”, says Lena.
Scandic will begin phasing out plastic straws, cocktail sticks and the plastic lids for the takeaway coffee mugs at all of its hotels starting as soon as possible. At the same time, Scandic is evaluating different eco-friendly replacement products and will offer eco-friendly straws at its bars and restaurants for guests who need them, for example, people with special needs.