Speaking at the Green Day Seminar at last week's The Hotel Show in Dubai, Emirates Environmental Group (EEG) chairman Habiba Al Marashi said Dubai hotels needed to be more proactive in spearheading environmental initiatives.
Al Marashi highlighted the number of hotels that had participated in the Dubai Green Tourism Awards.
"These [awards] have been launched for two years but only 104 hotels have applied for this award, there are hundreds of hotels from luxury to three star [in Dubai] - so where are the rest?", Al Marashi asked during a keynote speech.
She added: "We still have a long way to go. I call on the champions who have won the award in the past. It’s not only a trophy, it’s a serious responsibility – you become ambassadors of this programme. It’s your responsibility to go out of your comfort zone; hold seminars for peers and say how you achieved it. This is where it comes alive."
Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing's Shaikha Al Mutawa said the number of hotels nominating for the award had increased since the board opened it up to hotel apartments.
"For last year in 2011 we had 104 participants, this was 79 in 2009 – we included hotel apartment so the number increased."
Al Mutawa said it the tourism board has seen three-star hotels performing as well, if not better than, some five-star hotels in terms of environmental best practice.
Former Dubai Green Tourism Awards winner Faroukh Sunny, GM, Savoy Dubai followed the keynote speeches with a case study of how the hotel had achieved optimum efficiency.