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In partnership with the energy company E.ON, the hotel is setting new standards for sustainability in the industry via a recently installed fuel cell.
The fuel cell offers a huge advantage over conventional power generation systems as they generate electricity and heat in a non-combustion process which is virtually absent of pollutants such as nitrous oxide or fine dust particles. The use of fuel cell technology allows the Radisson Blu Frankfurt to generate a large share of the energy needed to run the hotel free of emissions.
With more than 400 rooms and suites the hotel has enormous energy needs which had previously been supplied entirely by the power grid. Starting in late summer 2017, the fuel cells will supply about three gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity and two GWh of heat to the hotel. The highly efficient technology also allows the Radisson Blu to reduce CO2 emissions by about 600 tons a year. This amount is equal to the CO2 emissions from 50,000 cars driving 100 kilometers.
Inge Huijbrechts, Vice President of Responsible Business at the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group said, “We are proud to help carry out such a pioneering project - the first of its kind in Europe. The project will help expand our innovative sustainability work and bring us an important step closer to achieving our ambitious Think Planet goal of reducing the CO2 consumption in our hotels by another 10 percent by 2020.”
E.ON believes there is enormous potential energy savings in the hotel industry: energy intensive processes such as heating water, lighting and cooling mean that a hotel requires substantial amounts of electricity and heat throughout the entire year. Compared to office buildings, the hotel industry has relatively high energy costs – on average between 5 and 10 percent of total operating revenue.
It’s estimated the German hotel industry alone emits about five million tons of CO2 annually. It’s an issue the world’s leading hotel groups including Carlson Rezidor are taking seriously and tackling together through collaborative work with the International Tourism Partnership.
At the same time, sustainability is becoming ever more important for hotel guests. Karsten Wildberger, member of the Executive Board at E.ON SE said, “The continuous growth in the hotel industry makes it an important market for E.ON's energy solutions business. Innovative energy solutions such as fuel cells can supply added value for hotels, as they significantly lower energy costs and dramatically increase environmental friendliness – up to the point of being climate neutral.”
The project is also receiving additional support of in total 800,541 Euros through the “National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Innovation Program” from the Germany's Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure. The National Innovation Program for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology (NOW) GmbH is sponsoring the project with the goal of developing and marketing internationally competitive hydrogen and fuel cell technology products. FuelCell Energy Solutions will supply the fuel cells for the project and monitor the project remotely together with E.ON, to help make sure the system runs as efficiently as possible.
You can find more energy and low carbon solutions for hotels in these pages.