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"GREEN" HOTELS SAVE MONEY
WHILE THEY HELP SAVE THE PLANET

Hoteliers who decide to "green" up find very quickly that there are many benefits. First and very importantly, they save money. Reduced water usage and reduced energy usage lowers monthly bills. Reduced solid waste saves money by reducing the need for the number or size of dumpsters orthe number of pickups. Secondly, "green" hoteliers earn and receive special adulation and praise from guests for taking an environmental stand. Thirdly, "green" hoteliers find that guests' adulation and praise results in new business coming to their doors. Environmental organizations and interested individuals choose to patronize "green"hotels with guestroom, meeting and convention business because they appreciate the hotel management's ecologically-strong position.

What are "green" hoteliers doing environmentally? Environmental innovations in hotel guest rooms include towel and sheet cards which ask the guest to consider using towels more than once and not have sheets changed every day. Soap and shampoo dispensers installed in guest rooms are a super choice because they keep hundreds of thousands of little plastic bottles from ending up in our dumps.

Fluorescent lighting reduces utility bills. The lessened demand for energy reduces hotels' impact on our utility plants and our natural resources. The Marriott Marquis with 1,877 rooms in New York City replaced all their incandescent light bulbs with fluorescents, and, guess what? The local utility paid for all those bulbs as part of a long-range plan to extend the life of their utility plant. So, It cost the Marriott Marquis nothing except for the manpower to replace all those bulbs, andtheir electric costs have been reduced drastically. The Marriott Marquisalso has a sophisticated, computerized lighting system which turns lights in meeting rooms on and off on a schedule so that lights are lit for only the most optimum time period.

The 482-room Inter-Continental Hotel in New Orleans started recycling several years ago. They hired employees to work in their basement to separate all the recyclables. Management was absolutely astonished to find that the separators were recovering over $1,000 a month of hotel property that had been discarded. Washcloths, towels, napkins, knives, forks and so forth were all recovered. All had been discarded prior tothe recycling program.

Mother's Inn, Berkeley, West Virginia, sits on the edge of the beautiful, mountainous Cacapon State Park. The inn received a state grant to place a public recycling center on their property. The stockade-fenced facility accepts a wide array of recyclables from No. 1 and 2 plastics,to cardboard and paper, to aluminum and bi-metal cans and to foam peanuts which are reused by a local mailing business. Mother's Inn can be proud of providing such an excellent service to the nearby community.

What ideas can other businesses or individuals use? Delamp vending machines. Approximately 55% of the electricity used by a vending machineis used to light it. Stop buying or using styrofoam. A few table spoons on vinegar in a toilet every 10 to 14 days will dissolve hard water deposits and keep them from forming again. Weeds growing through a sidewalk or driveway will disappear after being sprayed with straight vinegar.

A free "Meeting Planner's Questionnaire" is available from "Green" Hotels Association®. The two-page faxable form is designed to reveal how"green" a hotelier is willing to make your event whether it is aluncheon, wedding reception or a convention for 5,000.

A set of traveler's towel and sheet cards along with a letter tomanagement is also available from "Green" Hotels Association® for $3.50 postage paid, and is the perfect gift for any traveler. The cards let hotel management know that changing linens every day is not necessary.Each linen card has translations into Spanish, French, German andJ apanese on the reverse for worldwide use.

What are membership benefits? "Green" Hotels receive GHA's - acomprehensive compilation of conservation tactics and methods. GHA guarantees that the hotel will save more money than the membership costs. The bi-monthly member newsletter is packed with in-depth smart,practical information on greening. An Internet site listing member properties along with media attention helps to bring new business to the doors of member properties. Pole and front desk flags are available to announce "A "Green" Hotel" to guests. Ceres Press' Choose to Reuse says,"The lodging industry is one of the few business sectors to actually band together around an environmental platform, promoted by "Green" Hotels Association.

"Green" Hotels are committed to encouraging,promoting and supporting ecological consciousness in the hospitality industry. The association's purpose is to bring together hoteliers interested in environmental issues. GH encourages every change from adding "drinking water served on request only" to the menu to installing new HVAC systems, and every measure in between.


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