Eco Rating Kingfisher Ecolodge

Name of property Kingfisher Ecolodge
Person completing this form Mr. Massimo Mera
Position Owner / Managing Director
Address of property Ban Khiat Ngong
Champasak province
Country Laos
Phone number including country code and area code +856 (0)30 5345016
Web site Kingfisher Ecolodge
E-mail info@kingfisherecolodge.com
Type of property Lodge
Number of rooms or cottages 10
Maximum number of guests 20
Eco memberships Business member Ecoclub
Eco ratings, certifications, awards Butterfly Eco Rating: 3.6 out of 5
  • Do you have a written environmental or social sustainability policy?     NO

If yes, please attach.

  • Do you have a written environmental management system?              NO

If yes, please attach.

  • Describe the property – aim, size, facilities, amount of land owned and leased  (150 words max)
    Lodge with 6 bungalows superior and 2 bungalows with 2 basic rooms each.

Facilities: restaurant and bar, internet point, eco activities (trekking, bird watching, elephant rides, etc..), credit card payment, international phone call. Leased land (from Government), about 7 hectars.

  • Describe the location, including distance to nearest town and size of town (100 words max)

We are located inside Xe Pian protected area on the edge of a vast wetland area and close to the village of Khiat Ngong, well known for their elephants.
Closest town is Pakse (province capital) which is about 60km (of which 12km is dirt road) from the lodge.

  • Describe WHY you made the decision to develop an eco resort (100 word max)

An idea that I developed while in Italy because I thought that this is the right way to promote tourism in Laos. I choose Laos because it’s a country I already knew and my wife is Lao, furthermore tourism is at an initial stage in this country and very little tourism infrastructures are present, especially outside Vientiane and Luang Prabang.

Introduction to the Butterfly Club’s Eco Rating

The Butterfly Club Eco Rating has five equally-weighted categories:

  • Energy;
  • Water;
  • Recycling and waste;
  • Land and nature conservation; and
  • Community.

Each category has five levels, designated by one to five butterflies.  Through self assessment, resort operators completing this rating will determine their own levels within each category based on their responses to items listed below.

Two categories – energy and water – have similar rating systems with Levels 1 and 2 addressing conservation of existing resources, and Levels 3, 4 and 5 addressing creation of renewable energy or capturing water.

Level five in every category also requires written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record consumption; (2) test and apply additional conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific targets.   We require a copy of your policies if you achieve level 5 in any category.

Eco Rating Kingfisher Ecolodge Energy

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

X___  use natural air circulation and fans, not air conditioners
X__  use natural light during the day
X___  minimize use of fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines and equipment
X___  use “on demand” or solar heating for hot water
X___  air dry clothes/linens
X___  wash dishes by hand
(not sure)___  use energy efficient appliances and electronics
X___  use low wattage fluorescent light bulbs
X___  change linens, tablecloths, napkins upon request
X___  switch off lights when not used
Other energy conservation activities? Please list:

Level 1 = four or fewer energy conservation activities

Level 2 = five or more energy conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – renewable energy: Indicate proportion (%) of energy from each source:

10% (estimate)___  solar
0%___  wind
0%___  hydro
0%___  generator
90%___  public utility
Other energy sources? Please list:

100% TOTAL
How were these proportions developed?

Level 3 = renewable energy is employed and is less than 1/3 of all energy

Level 4 = renewable energy constitutes 1/3 – 2/3 of all energy

Level 5 = renewable energy constitutes 2/3 or more of all energy.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record energy consumption; (2) test and apply additional energy conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific energy targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Energy Level 5 (required).

Your Energy Level (select 1 – 5) =   3

Eco Rating Kingfisher Ecolodge Water

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

X__  low flow faucets and showerheads
X__  low water use toilets
X__  change linens, towels, tablecloths, and napkins upon request
___use table mats that can be wiped and not laundered
__  use biodegradable laundry detergent, dish soap and hand soap
(no swimming pool)__  treat swimming pool with chlorine-free processes
Other water conservation activities?  Please list.
Natural water treatment

Level 1 = three or fewer water conservation activities

Level 2 = four or more water conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – capture and treat fresh water and manage waste water. Capture water: Indicate proportion (%) of water from each source:

___  spring
___  river
___  rain
___  reuse gray
___  public utility
Other water sources? Please list.
100% Deep well.
100% TOTAL

Fresh water treatment: how is captured fresh water treated?
X___  naturally.  Indicate method: charcoal, ultraviolet light, other? List:  sand and gravel, carbon, manganese sand, anthracite.
___  chemically.  List chemicals used:

Waste water management:
X___  septic tanks
___  cesspools
___  other? List methods:

Level 3: Water is captured (from springs, rivers, rain or prior use) and constitutes less than 1/3 of water from all sources.  Water is treated chemically.  Water disposal does not minimize damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 4:  Captured water constitutes 1/3 to 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 5:  Captured water constitutes more than 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests.   In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record water consumption; (2) test and apply additional water conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific water targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Water Level 5 (required).

Your Water Level (select 1 – 5):  4

Eco Rating Kingfisher Ecolodge Recycling and waste

Check all that apply:

X___   use durable service items, e.g. cups, glasses, dishes, tableware, storage items
X___   buy fresh and local to reduce packaging and emissions from transportation
X___   purchase in bulk to reduce packaging (whenever possible)
X___   recycle paper, glass, plastic, aluminium
X___   minimize emissions from fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines & equipment
X___   zero waste in the kitchen (not sure what this means)
X___   serve local water, not bottled water (we also offer for sale bottled water but we serve local water for free)
___   cleaning products are biodegradable
___   compost organic matter
Other methods to recycle waste? Please list.
Kitchen waste are used to feed chickens and ducks.

Level 1 = four or fewer recycling activities

Level 2 = five recycling activities

Level 3 = six recycling activities

Level 4 = seven recycling activities

Level 5 = eight or more recycling activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record recycling and waste; (2) test and apply additional recycling and waste conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific recycling and waste targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Recycling and Waste Level 5 (required).

Your Recycling and Waste Level (select 1 – 5):  4

Eco Rating Kingfisher Ecolodge Land and nature conservation

Check all that apply:

X___   minimize tree removal when building
X___   use only botanical (plant-based) herbicides & pesticides in garden & grounds
X___   maintain organic gardens as food source for resort (only during dry season)
___   use biodegradable cleaning products
X___   minimize external illumination
___   take additional specific actions to preserve the local habitat.  Please list actions and projects:
Level 1: one or two land and nature conservation activities

Level 2: three land and nature conservation activities

Level 3: four land and nature conservation activities

Level 4: five land and nature conservation activities

Level 5: six or more land and nature conservation activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record land and nature conservation activities; (2) test and apply additional land and nature conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific land and nature conservation targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Land and Nature Conservation Level 5 (required).

Your Land and Nature Conservation Level (select 1 – 5):  3

Eco Rating Kingfisher Ecolodge Community

This category addresses policies and activities regarding staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the community.

Check all activities that apply:

X___  hire staff residing near the resort          40% local nationals (100% lao staff)
X___  use local suppliers                                 50% purchased goods produced locally
(very little goods is produced in Laos)
X___  re-invest resort income locally            30% income re-invested locally (lodge   
 extension in 2008)
X___  pay above local prevailing wage
___  pay into local social security (not existing in Laos)
___  provide health insurance or coverage
X___  use regular staff meetings to educate staff about sustainable processes throughout the resort, in the garden, with waste disposal, etc
___  provide educational awareness programs for staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the local community
X___  provide sustainable transport to work for staff (all staff is from the nearby village or live at the lodge)
X___  take additional specific actions to support the local community. Please list actions and projects.

  • We put 5% of our activities income to support the local primary school.
  • All our activities involve the local community (guides, elephants)
  • We collaborate with a WWF project by selling souvenirs to tourist, the profit is going to support the local village and the park management.

Level 1: one or two community activities

Level 2: three to five community activities

Level 3: six to seven community activities

Level 4: eight to nine community activities

Level 5: ten or more community activities.  In addition, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record community activities; (2) test and apply additional methods to support the community; and (3) work towards specific community targets.

Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Community Level 5 (required).

Your Community Level (select 1 – 5):  4

YOUR OVERALL ECO SCORE (add your level for each category and divide by 5):  3.6

We have three final questions which are not part of the eco rating: 

  • Please describe your single most important eco achievement:

We helped to stop (or at least to greatly reduce) illegal hunting in the area.

  • Indicate additional sustainable practices that you plan to institute within the next 6 months.
    No forecast at the moment but thinking to apply for an Eco label certification within next year.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add to this eco rating?