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NAPA, CALIF.—The Inn on First announced that it has been successfully recertified by the Napa County Green Business Program, qualifying as a green business. The Green Business certification is good for three years and is given to businesses that meet green business standards. This means that The Inn on First has conserved resources and prevented pollution through its environmental conservation efforts.
ATLANTA—InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) announced that IHG Green Engage, the online sustainability program used by more than 2,600 IHG-branded hotels worldwide, is now recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council under its LEED Volume program and Green Key Global (GKG) as providing streamlined pathways to certification. IHG is the first hotel company to provide an approach to precertification for new-build hotels under the LEED 2009 for New Construction rating system. This is IHG’s second LEED designation—IHG was also the first hotel company to provide LEED precertification for existing hotels. Globally recognized sustainability certifications like LEED and GKG could ultimately improve hotels’ bottom line, as government and corporate clients increasingly request hotels’ environmental credentials through the Response for Proposal (RFP) process. IHG Green Engage provides an accurate and streamlined approach for responding to RFP questions on sustainability by helping hotels track their carbon footprint; energy consumption; water consumption; and waste diversion rate.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its second installment of the LEED in Motion report series: Places and Policies. The report states that there are nearly 60,000 LEED green building projects across the globe, spanning 10.6 billion square feet. Notably, Canada, India, China, the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) and Brazil lead the way for countries with the highest number of projects outside the United States.
LAS VEGAS—MGM Resorts International has started the largest installation of electrical vehicle (EV) charging stations in Nevada. Twenty-seven EV charging stations will be located at nine of the company’s Las Vegas resorts in addition to MGM Resorts’ main corporate offices. Additional stations will be available at Circus Circus Reno. The charging stations, which will be installed in guest garages and valet areas, will be available for employees and guests to use at no cost. “It is important that our guests have the convenience and ability to continue sustainable habits during their time with us,” said Cindy Ortega, Chief Sustainability Officer of MGM Resorts International. “The installation of these charging stations encourages green practices in both our guests and employees, serving as a natural step toward smarter, cleaner transportation systems.” Drivers will be able to access real-time information about the ChargePoint EV charging stations via a mobile application, which shows whether a station is open; the percentage of charge on the vehicle, when the vehicle is fully charged and when a charging nozzle has been removed.
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA—JW Marriott Hotels & Resorts has expanded its luxury portfolio in South Korea with the unveiling of the new 170-room JW Marriott Dongdaemun Square Seoul. The new hotel is the second JW Marriott to open in Seoul and the first hotel in the city to receive LEED Gold certification.
NATIONAL REPORT—Last year was a big year for national green lodging certification with the launch of TripAdvisor’s GreenLeaders program but at the state level there was still a lot of certification and recognition activity and that will continue through 2014. There are currently 27 state level programs that offer some degree of certification or recognition for lodging establishments actively working to reduce waste, energy consumption and water consumption. . Green Lodging News previously had listed 28 states but Montana has been removed from the list. Its partnership with Green Directory Montana is no longer active. Within the 27 states that have active programs are a total of 2,605 properties that have earned official certification or recognition for their green efforts. Common to state programs is funding challenges and lack of manpower. In one state the program is run by “one-fourth” of a person. Another state’s program was totally volunteer run. A telltale sign of a struggling state program is a website that has not been updated—in some cases, we found, not for several years.
BOSTON—Driven by superior features and falling costs, the market for light-emitting diode (LED) luminaires, or optimized permanent light fixtures, will grow more than 12-fold over the next decade—from $2 billion today to $25 billion in 2023, a compound annual growth rate of 25 percent, according to Lux Research.
PARSIPPANY, N.J.—Wyndham Worldwide announced that RobecoSAM, an investment asset management firm, has recognized the company as a 2014 Silver Class Sustainability Leader in its annual Sustainability Yearbook. This is the first time the company has been included in the Sustainability Yearbook and received the Silver Class rating.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched the WaterSense H2Otel Challenge as a way for agency partners and other organizations to encourage hotels to use best management practices that will save water and money, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. “Hotels that reduce their water use will not only help their community save precious resources, but can gain a competitive edge in today’s green marketplace,” said Nancy Stoner, acting assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Water. “Since 2006, WaterSense has helped Americans save more than 487 billion gallons of water, and now we’re building on that success to help hotels take their sustainability efforts to the next level.” From New York City’s Times Square to the Las Vegas strip, hotels across the country will take a pledge to “ACT”—assess, change, and track their water use in the following ways: assess water use and savings opportunities throughout the hotel; change products and processes to more water-efficient models and methods; and track water reduction progress before and after incorporating best management practices.
MCLEAN, VA.—At the 2014 World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting, Hilton Worldwide announced a global commitment that aims to impact at least one million young people by 2019 by helping them to reach their full potential. This new initiative will open doors for young people by connecting them to the world of travel by enabling them to experience new cultures, contributing to the improvement of the sustainability of the industry and shaping their future with opportunities in Hilton Worldwide’s expansive supply chain.
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