Your primary resource for Sustainable & Responsible Tourism in Ireland – Certification Programme – Award Certification

The Programme is the only Irish developed environmental certification standard for the hospitality sector. The Awards are recognised both nationally and internationally as standards that allow members achieve good environmental performance and allow visitors to choose “Greener” hospitality businesses knowing that defined criteria are being implemented and monitored.

Our members and award winners have set themselves the target to reduce their environmental footprint where possible. Members aim to reduce carbon emissions by reducing energy consumption, preserve scarce water resources and minimise waste production.

Members are encouraged to protect and promote local biodiversity, buy locally where possible and encourage visitors to use local “green” businesses and services. Visitors are encouraged to adopt a responsible approach to the environment without reducing the quality or enjoyment of their visit.

Members employees are encouraged and trained to implement and practice good stewardship within the business and our members publish annual plans and set targets to reduce the waste of scarce resources.

This is a voluntary programme that aims to develop leadership and best practice within the hospitality sector.

Our Criteria is happy to publish the criteria that our members must implement and achieve to gain certification. Visitors & consumers can see that members follow a robust and demanding process and we welcome feedback from visitors regarding any of our members or about the programme or criteria.

To view the criteria for any of the hospitality businesses we certify click on the link. Certification Criteria currently offers membership and a staged certification awards programme;

– Membership – members join the programme and start a Resource Efficiency programme – if certification is also a key deliverable/target then they also commit to the programme charter

– Eco-label Award – the first step towards Good & Best Practice – members implement a set of criteria and commence “Greening” their business

– Silver/Gold Award – this is the target for all members – these levels are challenging yet feasible and sets the business on the road towards best practice.

– Silver Award – Good Practice

– Gold Award – Best Practice

(The Awards are Type 1 Eco-Labels as defined by the ISO – International Organisation for Standardisation)

Who are the Programmes for?

All Hospitality Businesses can be certified to either the Eco-label, Silver or Gold Award. The general principles for all members is to implement an Environmental Management System and this requires you to identify the environmental issues within your own business.

However, implementing a certification programme requires time and effort and initially will require a fair amount of paperwork. Certification is primarily targeted towards the hotel sector though it is open to all. As a guide we would suggest that any business spending more than €75,000 annually on utilities (Energy, Water and Waste) should go for certification as substantial savings can be made as you implement the criteria and certification assists you in maintaining those savings over the long-term.

Through we also operate a recognition programme for smaller hospitality businesses – the GreenMark by  This is more suitable for very small and micro businesses.

We also provide programmes for “Green Destinations” and “Green Festivals”