Study: Dubai hotels best performers are 58% more energy efficient

Several Dubai hotels are way ahead in achieving high levels of energy and water use efficiency, says an Emirates GBC study

HE Secretary General Ahmad Muhairbi, Secretary-General of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy
HE Secretary General Ahmad Muhairbi, Secretary-General of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy

Findings of the Building Efficiency Accelerator (BEA) Project study reveal that the best hotel and hotel apartment performers consume 58% less energy and 65% less water per unit area than the worst performers in the category. The best performers in hotel industry are 58% more energy efficient.

The findings also pointed out that older hotels are likely to consume more energy and water per unit area, further highlighting the importance of retrofits. Higher star-rated hotel properties are also likely to consume slightly more energy and water per unit area with hotels and hotel apartments consuming 12% less energy and 36% less water, on average, per area than resorts.

A total of 85 hotels submitted energy and water data, along with general building characteristics. The findings revealed that the best hotel performers consume 65% less water per area than worst performers, and the best resorts performers consume 78% less water per area than worst performers.

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The findings also showed that a medium size hotel in Dubai consumes 252 kWh/m2/year of energy and 1,486 litres/m2/year of water. In terms of energy use, a medium size resort in Dubai consumes 334 kWh/m2/year of energy and 1,676 litres/m2/year of water.

Older hotels and higher star-rated properties are both likely to consume more energy and water per unit area, the study showed.

The study pointed out that other hotels “need to pace up their sustainability commitment to ensure they are aligned with the sustainable development vision of the nation.”

The study, which was prepared by Emirates Green Building Council (Emirates GBC), an independent forum aimed at conserving the environment by strengthening and promoting green building practices, also provided insights on energy and water use efficiency by schools, and malls in Dubai.

Speaking about the findings, Saeed Al Abbar, chairman of Emirates GBC, said: “The project’s main objectives is to promote energy efficiency within Dubai’s existing building stock by providing performance benchmark data to the industry and public sector.”

“We believe this will provide vital information on the performance of existing buildings to policy makers and building owners and will accelerate the uptake of energy retrofits.”

“The findings reveal that there is a strong potential for savings and operational efficiencies that can be achieved through remedial actions such as audits, retrofits, energy management and the use of awareness campaigns or training to drive changes in behaviour.”

“The report also highlights the importance of deep retrofits as a substantial measure in advancing towards 100 per cent Net Zero Carbon Buildings by 2050 and to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement of keeping global warming well below two degrees celsius.”

His Excellency Secretary General Ahmad Muhairbi, Secretary-General of the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, said: “Energy sustainability has come to the top of the agenda of the Dubai Government, driven by the visionary leadership of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, The Ruler of Dubai.”

“Having a direct impact on overall wellbeing of its citizens and residents, sustainability ensures a sound foundation on our journey to improve the image of our local urban life and become the number one city in the world in all aspects.”

“We thank the Emirates Green Building Council for working with us both on meeting our goals within the Accelerator. One of the results of this work is launching of several initiatives within the government, and this publication in particular comes as one of the key deliverables with a broad application to demonstrate joint work between the public and the private sector.”

The BEA project is led by the World Resources Institute (WRI) under the UN programme, Sustainable Energy for All (SEforAll). The aims of the project are to accelerate the implementation of building efficiency policies and programs, and double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency by 2030.

Dubai is the first and only city in the Middle East committed to the BEA, and Emirates GBC is serving as the BEA City Liaison in partnership with Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE) to evaluate the energy performance of hotels, schools and malls in the city.

Some of the hotel groups that took part in the study include:  Accor Hotels, Middle East & Egypt; Hilton, Middle East & Africa; Taaleem, Inspiring Young Minds; Majid Al Futtaim; Marriott International, Middle East & Africa; Millennium Hotels & Resorts, Middle East & Africa; Movenpick Hotels & Resorts, Middle East & Africa; and Nakheel.

The project was led by Majd Fayyad, technical manager, and Jason John, technical analyst, at Emirates GBC, both of whom also prepared the report.

The report also recommends building on Dubai’s existing strategies and policies to encourage benchmarking across all types of buildings. This will help future mandates for building audits and retrofits for poor performing buildings, thereby paving the way for decarbonisation and net zero buildings.

Majd Fayyad, technical manager, and Jason John, technical analyst, at Emirates GBC led the project and prepared the report.

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