Belgian Youth Hostel Association scores an ecological hat trick

Following on from the Green Key award for Jacques Brel Youth Hostel at the end of 2012, it’s now the turn of the NamurMons and Malmedy Youth Hostels to obtain this prestigious accolade, which recognises those tourist establishments that adopt environmentally-aware practices.

Stéphane PICRON, infrastructure manager explains: “For all three hostels, efforts have been focused on adopting environmentally-responsible signage intended for users, installing efficient showerheads, aerators, lighting, as well as using maintenance products, foodstuffs and electricity from environmentally-friendly sources. And we mustn’t forget waste sorting, which is already a firm feature.

Namur Youth Hostel has undergone a complete renovation, with the aim of reducing consumption (insulation,energy saving). A new printer no longer produces waste in the form of ink cartridges and some of the lavatories have been fitted with waterless urinals.

Mons Youth Hostel now has an automatic lighting system in the bathroom facilities which turns the lighting on and off according to use, and there is a sensor-based ventilation system in meeting rooms.

The technical management of the heating and ventilation system is centralised.

Finally, Malmedy Youth Hostel has been fitted out with a 20,000 litre rainwater tank which can supply the toilets (saving nearly 400,000 litres of drinking water every year), bike washing facilities and can also be used for watering plants.

It is also equipped with its own treatment plant and solar panels which provide over 40% of the hot water. Farm animals are responsible for getting rid of some of the organic waste and the ecological pond at the hostel also promotes indigenous flora and fauna.