Jacks Alt-Stays Climate Action Plan

Our Climate Action Plan 🌎

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Who sets up a Climate Action Plan before they even set up their business?

We do.

Why? Because it’s just the right thing to do. Every individual and business needs to do their bit in the fight against climate change.

The environment is something that we take personally, and since the early days of concept development, we were determined to create a genuinely environmentally sustainable business.

Here are 11 ways we’ll be doing our bit for the planet.


1. One Stay = Five Trees Planted 🌱

Through partnering with Ecologi, we’re vowing to plant 5 trees for every single booking at Jack’s Alt-Stays! That’s right, five.

These trees are planted in low-cost, high-impact areas around the world, because it’s “Save the Planet“, right?

So, unfortunately (or fortunately) you won’t see Adam and I running around with spades covering the whole island in trees, but as well as the tree planting through Ecologi, we’ll be getting involved in many local environmental initiatives, which I’ll touch on later in the blog.

Ecologi also runs environmental projects closer to home, such as this reforestation project in Dalry, North Ayrshire. We’ll be getting involved with local community initiatives too, as you’ll see further down this blog.

Ecologi Jacks Alt-Stays Tree Planting


2. Proudly Powered by 100% Renewable Electricity ⚡️

Our Alternative Eco-Cabins will be powered by 100% solar, hydro, and wind-generated electricity.

We will be supplied by Octopus Business Energy – a 100% Green energy provider.

We currently power our electric blinds with solar panels, but we’re also exploring options to self-generate more of our cabins’ electricity through solar PV panels in the near future.

We don’t do fossil fuels.

Jacks Alt-Stays Eco-Cabin Renewable Wind Energy


3. Ambitious Eco Goals 🎯

For a wee tourism business on a wee Scottish island, we have set ourselves some pretty big eco-goals.

By the end of 2022, we aim to:

🌲 Plant 1,000 trees.

💨 Absorb 50 tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere.

🌍 Achieve & Maintain ‘Carbon Negative’ Status

Becoming a Carbon Negative business just means that we will remove more carbon from the atmosphere than we add to it. It’s a step beyond carbon neutrality.

In the near future, we’ll be getting our carbon neutrality status third-party verified in line with PAS 2060 standards.


If you didn’t know already…

We’re bringing our ‘Alternative Eco-Cabin‘ concept to the scenic Isle of Cumbrae in Summer 2022. It’ll look like this:

Jack's Alt-Stays Eco-Cabin

Join our Journey for:

🎉 Free stay giveaways to celebrate our launch!

🚀 Progress updates & Official launch info

📖 Blog & video Content to inspire your next Scotland adventure!

✍️ Sign Up:

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4. Sustainably Built Eco-Cabins 🛠

We’ve been keen to get things right from the very start. Our cabins are being built locally, and by local builders.

Fewer logistics = less CO2 emitted.

We’ve worked with North Ayrshire-based Stewart Architects to bring the Eco-Cabin concept to its final design stage. We’ll now be working with North Ayrshire-based builders, System 5, who have a real focus on sustainable building processes.

Eco Cabin Build

The timbers used for the cabin structure and cladding are sustainably sourced and PEFC and/or FSC-certified. FSC, or the Forest Stewardship Council, certifies forests all over the world to ensure they meet the highest environmental and social standards. Products made with wood and paper from FSC forests are marked with their well-recognised tick tree’ logo, which means we can be confident that when using these materials to build our cabins, we won’t be harming the world’s forests. FSC certification is well recognised in the UK and has a more strict focus on the farmed forest management and chain of custody side of things. Once a tree is harvested, three more are planted in its place.

For the insulation, we’ve opted for market-leading EcoTherm®, resulting in a highly efficient thermal performance.

Jacks Alt-Stays Alternative Eco Cabin Build Progress

We have also carefully selected the eco-cabins’ fittings, lighting, appliances, and contents of the cabins, based on efficient energy performance. The chosen Herschel infra-red panel heaters are market-leading, use 30% less energy than standard electric heaters, are thermostat controlled, and can be controlled remotely. Low-energy internal and external LED lighting has been fitted. Again, all of these are powered by 100% green energy.

Jack's Alt-Stays Eco Cabin The Hive Millport (8)

The flooring and bathroom wall supplier, Multipanel UK strive to be at the forefront of new environmental manufacturing technologies, material developments and recycling possibilities in every product they design and produce.

The double bed is from Get Laid Beds®, who also have a keen focus on sustainability. Their Scandinavian Pine is sustainably sourced from FSC & PEFC forests and they have planted 72,600 trees in Africa, so far. Any excess waste is made into wood briquettes and donated to their local community to help reduce their heating bills.

Jack's Alt-Stays Eco Cabin The Hive Millport (7)

This is topped with an eco-friendly mattress, Vegan down duvet and pillows, made with fibres from recycled plastic bottles, uniquely spun and blown in such a way that they simulate the hand feel and warmth of natural down.

These are just a few examples of our eco-conscious decisions made through the cabin design and build process. Check out our Eco-Cabin Build Journey Blog for more.

Jacks Alt-Stays Alternative Eco Cabin Build Progress


5. An Eco Commute 🚴‍♂️

Sometimes it’s the wee things that matter. We’ll be cycling in to site most days.

Saying that, it’s not like cycling every day is a chore for us. We live just across the water in Largs, love a good cycle, and the route to site is nothing short of stunningly scenic.

The only time we won’t be cycling is when the weather doesn’t permit (in that case we’ll grab the bus), and once a week we need to bring supplies over in the car.

Millport Ferry


6. Offsetting our Unavoidable Carbon Footprint ⚖️

First, it’s about quantifying and tracking our CO2e contributions. Second, it’s about reductions and minimising them. Third, it’s about offsetting the rest.

Being located on an island, there will, unfortunately, be some areas of our business where we are just not able to avoid a carbon footprint. The reality for us is that ferry travel will be simply unavoidable (unless someone invents teleportation sometime soon).

Although it’s only an 8-minute trip over and the impact is split between large numbers of passengers, let’s face it, the ferry is no eco angel. And as mentioned, we’ll need to take the car over occasionally.

As part of our partnership with Ecologi and on top of our “buy one, plant one” (…or five) model – we also contribute a set amount each month to more-than-offset our unavoidable carbon footprint.

Here’s our impact so far:

Jacks Alt-Stays Ecologi Climate Impact

24.88 Tonnes of CO2 is equivalent to one of the following:

Jacks Alt-Stays Ecologi Climate Impact

Lastly, 3 of our 5 cabins come equipped with a Skargards hot tub.  We chose to endorse wood-fired hot tubs as they’re natural, smell amazing and require no harmful chemicals to run.

But here’s the thing… we’re not using wood.

I hear you saying “wait. How can you run a wood-fired hot tub without wood?”

Coffee logs.

Coffee Logs Bio Bean

These fantastic wee logs are designed for wood burners, and believe it or not, reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Yep! Coffee logs are essentially a product produced from 100% waste coffee grounds generated by cafes. All these coffee grounds would otherwise be going into landfill where they would emit methane, a greenhouse gas 25x more potent than carbon dioxide.

Each log is the equivalent of about 25 cups of coffee – that means 400 cups per bag! They’re also super energy efficient and have fully recyclable packaging, so tick all the boxes with their eco-credentials ✅.

We wrote a full blog on this. Check out:

Wood Fired Hot Tubs - Eco Environmental


7. Partner Eco Credentials 🤝

We’ll also be making sure that anyone we work with going forward has their eco-credentials in place.

For example, the linen hire supplier, ‘Jonhson’s Stalbridge‘, has recently significantly invested in improving their environmental performance. Our guest consumables suppliers, ‘Hotel Supplies Ltd’ and ‘Kingdom Coffee’ offer sustainably sourced products in recycled and/or recyclable packaging.

ARRAN Sense of Scotland‘ supplies our guest toiletries in PET recyclable bulk containers. We then refill and reuse our bottles for guest shampoo, shower gel, and hand soap, meaning zero plastic to landfill.

ECOLAB’ provide their most environmentally friendly cleaning product range in fully recyclable packaging.

Who Gives A Crap‘, who supply our toilet roll, kitchen roll, and tissues, are B Corp certified, for their highest standards of social and environmental impact.

Our Coffee Logs, used to heat the hot tubs, are firstly a more efficient and sustainable alternative to logs, but are also supplied direct, cutting out any ‘middle man transport’.

Our environmental scrutiny of our suppliers even comes down to our web hosting provider. ProStack have their ISO 14001:2015 – Environmental Management Standard in place, which encourages businesses to help reduce environmental impacts, reduce waste, and to be more sustainable. ProStack has demonstrated a plan to boost their environmental responsibilities in a systematic approach with the goal to continuously reduce our carbon footprint.


8. The Environment – It’s in our Values. 🌎

One of our core founding values is to ‘Respect Our Backyard’ – Leave nothing but footsteps. Always respect your surrounding environment and leave it a little better than you found it.

By this, we mean both our immediate ‘back yard’, i.e. our site, surrounding, area, and our neighbours, but also the wider island, national, and global environments.

We return to our values every time we make a business decision – because what’s the point in even having them if you don’t?

Check out Jack’s Alt-Stays Founding Values.


9 Looking After our Environment at a Community Level 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

Both Adam and I are passionate about the environment and see our environmental duty extend beyond our own site’s boundary.

We get involved with beach clean initiatives, such as the FSC’s recent Kames Bay clean, with a view to champion these in the near future.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by FSC Millport (@fscmillport)

In the near future, we’ll be getting involved with local tree-planting initiatives. We’ll also plan to lead the campaign for on-street recycling facilities and the local water refill campaign against single-use plastic bottles later this year.


10. We’ve Declared a Climate Emergency! 🚨

Tourism Declares supports tourism businesses, organisations, and individuals in declaring a climate emergency and taking action to reduce their carbon emissions. They acknowledge the science stating we have to act now to address the crisis over the next decade.

Alongside fellow tourism organisations such as Visit Scotland, here are our five commitments in declaring a climate emergency;

    1. Develop and commit to this ‘Climate Action Plan’
    2. Share our commitment and progress publicly
    3. Cut carbon emissions
    4. Encourage our suppliers and partners to make the same declaration
    5. Advocate for change in tourism

11. Responsible Waste Management ♻️

We’ll be doing everything we can to eradicate the use of non-recyclable, single-use plastics in our Eco-Cabins. We’ll also make sure that our day-to-day waste and recycling processes are up to scratch!


So in a nutshell, that’s how we’ll make an ‘Alt-stay’ an ‘Eco-stay’.

As individuals, we have both become much more environmentally aware over the last few years. Greta would be proud!

Why a Climate Action Plan?  We have a Climate Action Plan in place from day 1.  It’s our way of holding ourselves accountable and committing to the cause.

We see our business as an extension of ourselves. – we do share the Jack name after all. That’s why from the get-go, we’ve set out to create a genuinely environmentally sustainable business.

Cheers!

Check out The Alternative Eco-Cabin Concept

 

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