Our sustainability approach is driven by our mission to educate and inspire people. We are the change our world needs and we hope to ultimately have a positive impact on people’s behaviour by sharing our learnings and steps to reduce our environmental footprint.
Waste audit – We are facing our waste head on every day by undertaking daily waste audits. We weigh and count compost, recyclables and landfill waste to gain a clear understanding of the different types of waste and ensure they end up in the correct waste stream. On average 55% percent of our guest in room sorting bins are incorrectly sorted. Without our daily waste audit, incorrectly sorted compostable and recyclable waste would end up in the landfill. We want to divert as much waste as possible from this fate and give it a chance of being either composted, repurposed, reused or recycled.
Compost – Organic waste, collected from in room sorting bins, are composted on site. This means they break down naturally and are diverted from rotting and polluting in tightly packed landfills. Our goal is to compost more than 50% of all organic waste on site. Food items like fruits, vegetables, coffee grounds, tea bags and eggshells can all be composted. To complete the cycle our guests can take a bag of nutritious compost home to use on their garden or in the community. We are regularly composting 35 – 40% of all guest waste.
Recycling – We take our sorting seriously. You’ll see around the property our waste trolley which sorts recyclables and ensures they end up in the correct waste stream. We know recycling is a difficult waste steam to understand, is prone to change due to demand and every city has their own rules. We keep up to date with these changes and are here to help and advise – just ask a team member. We sort recyclables into aluminium, cardboard, glass and plastics.
Green cleaning products – We continue to hunt around for the best environmentally friendly cleaning products that do the job well and break down easily at the end of their life cycle. We also look out for environmental culprits like phosphates and nitrates that are damaging to our waterways. All our cleaning products are biodegradable in the presence of oxygen and are proven to be the environmentally responsible option on the market due to being Environmental Choice Certified.
Guest condiments – We support fair trade and local suppliers. Our condiments (hot chocolate, tea, coffee, plunger coffee, sugar) are either fair trade or have been sourced from a local supplier (check out Revolver coffee here) .
Zero plastic – We actively look at ways to minimise our plastic waste. We say no to plastic packaging when purchasing and line our rubbish bins with a single magazine page (except our sanitary bins). This has diverted over 10,000 single use plastic bags from landfill every year! We have eliminated tetra pak carton waste (which is lined with plastic) by bottling our complimentary milks in reusable glass jars. This has diverted an average of 60 tetra pak cartons per week from the landfill during our peak season.
Hand soap – We send our used hand soap to beyond skin deep, a non for profit, to be remade into hygienic soap bars that are distributed to communities in need in NZ, Australia and other parts of the world. On average 80% of our 20g hand soaps are unused every time a room is turned over, an average of 200 bars of soap a month or about 3.2kg that we are sending to beyond skin deep and diverting from the landfill!
Energy – Our heating and electricity are both from sustainable and renewable sources. We use geothermal to heat everything from the entire property to our pool and we even have a steam box! Meridian supplies us with 100% renewable electricity from hydro stations, wind farms and solar sources.
Send your service – We give our guests the option of forfeiting their daily service in an initiative called Send your Service. When this is chosen, we donate $5 to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Rotorua and no servicing takes place. Not only are we able to donate to a great charity but we are saving resources! Since the end of 2017 we have donated over $8500!