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ANN ARBOR, MICH.—In response to a growing demand for independently-verified sustainable furnishing fabrics, NSF International, an independent developer of American National Standards that protect public health and the environment, has developed an official American national standard for sustainable commercial furnishing fabrics—NSF/ANSI 336: Sustainability Assessment for Commercial Furnishings Fabric. Developing national standards by which to measure a product’s sustainability attributes brings transparency and credibility to the sustainability marketplace and helps eliminate greenwashing. Independent, third-party organizations can now certify commercial furnishing fabrics against the new Sustainable Commercial Furnishings standard to verify the furnishing fabrics are sustainable. This satisfies a growing demand from designers, architects, facility managers and purchasing agents for independently-verified sustainable fabrics to use in their products and facilities. The science-based standard (NSF/ANSI 336) addresses the environmental, economic and social aspects of fabrics used in commercial furniture and other furnishings. A variety of fabrics can be certified to the standard, including woven, non-woven, bonded and knitted fabrics used for upholstery (e.g. office and hotel furniture), as well as vertical fabrics.
DALTON, GA.—Shaw Industries Group, Inc. has increased the recycled content in Eco Solution Q, the company’s premium branded Cradle to Cradle Silver certified carpet fiber, to 45 percent. Eco Solution Q now contains 20 percent pre-consumer recycled content and 25 percent post-consumer recycled content sourced from caprolactam (the monomer or ‘building block’ of Nylon 6) recovered through Shaw’s Evergreen Nylon 6 Recycling facility in Augusta, Ga.
MORROW, GA.—TOTO announced that it has expanded its sustainability initiatives at its manufacturing facility in Morrow, Ga. The company has formed a cross-industrial strategic partnership with Crossville, Inc., manufacturers of premium Porcelain Stone tile, which has developed proprietary systems for processing pre-consumer sanitary ware, fired tile, and filtrate waste back to powder that is used in the manufacture of new tile.
MIAMI—OBM International (OBMI), a leading international architectural and planning firm with nine global offices, has named K. Denaye Hinds as Director of Sustainability, announced Doug Kulig, CEO of OBMI. In her new role, Hinds will lead and expand OBMI’s international design and planning sustainability practice. She will focus on building relationships and engaging the development community, as well as federal and local governments, to promote sustainability objectives for OBMI’s clients and the places where their projects reside.
SANTA MONICA, CALIF.—A group of leaders in the hotel industry representing brands, hotel suppliers, architecture firms, purchasing companies, and sustainability experts has launched the Hospitality Sustainable Purchasing Consortium. The Consortium, led by MindClick SGM, will work collaboratively to facilitate greening the furniture, fixture and equipment (FF&E) supply chain for hotels by: leading the industry in development of an industrywide Hospitality Sustainable Purchasing Index (HSPI) to comprehensively measure the sustainability of FF&E suppliers and the products they sell; collaborating to establish consistent measures of sustainable purchasing performance for brands, owners and FF&E manufacturers; and establishing key performance indicators that enhance the environmental and social impact of the hotel industry while continuing to provide the highest levels of quality and service for hotel guests. With nearly 51,0001 lodging properties in the United States alone, and billions of dollars spent in FF&E purchasing annually, the hospitality industry has an important role to play in its path toward greater sustainability. The goal of the Consortium is to provide the industry with a unified approach to greening the global supply chain.
PHUKET, THAILAND—Guests at the exclusive Aleenta Phuket–Phang Nga resort were given the chance of a lifetime recently to help save indigenous turtles when they released 20 endangered baby leatherback turtles into the Andaman Sea. The event was part of the Aleenta Resorts & Spas Mai Khao Marine Turtle Initiative, managed by corporate social responsibility group, Pure Blue Foundation, which also pioneered the groundbreaking reef restoration project off the coast of the resort. The Pure Blue Foundation was created by Aleenta Resorts founder Anchalika Kijkanakorn. The resort has raised these particular baby turtles over the last few years and has shown its dedication to their cause by offering monthly support and funding to the Turtle Sanctuary, housed at the Khao Lumpee-Haad Thaymuang National Park just 20 minutes south of the resort. With this funding the resort employs a full-time representative to tend to more than 200 turtle hatchlings and rehabilitate injured turtles, as well as taking guests to visit the park. The 20 turtles were large enough to leave the nest and the sanctuary.
DENVER—The Westin Denver Downtown was recently honored by Host Hotels & Resorts with a sustainability award recognizing the hotel for a tradition of commitment to environmental responsibility. The hotel’s associates have made numerous commitments to reducing impact to the environment such as partnering with a company on a compost program; establishing an online in-room dining menu and guest directory; moving from Styrofoam and plastics to soy or corn-based packaging for to-go/box meals; and recycling in all 430 guestrooms, public and back-of-the-house space.
HEALDSBURG, CALIF.—h2hotel, a progressively-designed hotel located just off the historic town plaza in Healdsburg, announced that it has been awarded LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification and is the first LEED Gold certified hotel in Sonoma County. “Green design was a necessity and a natural progression for us,” said managing partner Paolo Petrone, who also co-owns Hotel Healdsburg. “Designed to use 27.8 percent less energy than the standard hotel in California, we have created an environmentally-conscious hotel without sacrificing comfort and style. h2hotel is a hotel that Healdsburg can be proud of. We continuously strive to be socially responsible by participating in conservation and greening efforts, and by encouraging our guests to be eco-minded during their stay as well as when they return home.” Reflecting Healdsburg’s relaxed Wine Country ambience and gentle rusticity, the hotel conveys straightforward simplicity with a sophisticated sense of space and style. A relatively small footprint, the hotel rises four stories with 36 guestrooms. During its building, more than 85 percent of h2hotel’s construction debris was recycled.
NEW YORK—Mexico was recognized by the Rainforest Alliance recently at a gala dinner and awards ceremony in New York on May 11. Mexico was recognized for its achievements in sustainable tourism in the Mayakoba region and for the forestry practices of the Mexican government.
SAN DIEGO—Graham Downes Architecture, a Southern Californian design firm, announces completion of preliminary design for The Royal Beach Resort, a 25-acre seaside resort in the Eguafo District, on the Cape Coast Central Region of Ghana. The Royal Beach Resort is Central Africa’s very first luxury eco-resort and will offer the latest leisure standards based on the most current principles of sustainable development.
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