The first eco-hostels in the UK opened last year, after a retrofit that saw one gain the usual core eco-attributes of photovoltaic roof panels, rainwater harvesting for toilet flushing, plus a wool insulation. But it also picked up a green roof, compost toilet and organic paint. Such changes to the hostel have enabled it to reduce water use by 30% and CO2 emissions by 40%. Now the hostel, in Lockton, Yorkshire, has just been awarded the European EcoLabel for meeting strict environment criteria such as energy efficiency and staff training. A sister winner is the Langdon Beck hostel that has done even better with a 75% cut in carbon dioxide emissions and 50% of all waste is being recycled. This is achieved via solar hot water heaters and a 2.5 kilowatt wind turbine. The British Youth Hostel Association (YHA), who spent £250,000 renovating the abodes, supported with European LEADER+ funding, are developing a network of eco-tourism habitats they are calling ‘Green Beacon’. Via The::Yorkshire Today.