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TECATE, MEXICO—The Second Annual Green Spa Network Fall Congress will be held November 1 to 5, 2009, at the historic Rancho La Puerta in Tecate, Mexico. As the premier spa sustainability event of the year, the four-night, five-day GSN Fall Congress will provide professionals with the opportunity to respond to the planetary imperative for sustainability—while increasing profitability and customer loyalty. Internationally known Paul Hawken will be the keynote speaker. Paul is a leading voice in the world of sustainable business and the search for a whole, nurturing society. He is co-founder of Smith & Hawken and author of “Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution,” which has been referred to by several heads of state as one of the five most important books in the world today.
ROCKVILLE, MD.—The EPA 2009 Green Power Purchaser list identified The Legacy Hotel & Meeting Centre as one of three hotels in the nation as 100 percent powered by green energy. In October 2008, The Legacy Hotel & Meeting Centre launched its Turn On program in partnership with Clean Currents and the EPA, integrating greener hotel products, clean energy, and inviting guests to offset the carbon footprint of their stay. “We are very proud of this accomplishment,” says Eric Siegel, executive vice president of Cohen Companies.
PARADISE, TEXAS—Garrett Creek Ranch Conference Center in Paradise, Texas, has become the first property in Wise County to undertake native grass restoration. Through this effort, more than 100 acres have begun to return to the grasses, such as Big and Little Bluestem, Lometa Indiangrass, Blackwell Switchgrass, Sideoats Grama, Canadian Wildrye, Green Sprangletop and Eastern Gammagrass, which fed the region 100 years ago. The property’s remaining 300 acres will be added to the program over the next two years. Additionally, a complete inventory of plants and wildlife has begun through which more than 450 species of plants have been identified by Bob O’Kennon, president, Texas Land Conservancy and vice chairman and research scientist, Botanical Research Institute of Texas.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC—In its 2010-2011 election, the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association’s (CHTA) environmental arm, the Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Tourism (CAST), recently re-elected Sir Royston O. Hopkin, KCMG, owner and chairman of Grenada’s award-winning Spice Island Beach Resort, as chairman of CAST for the fourth consecutive, two-year term. “CHTA is delighted that Sir Royston has been re-elected as the chairman of CAST by the CAST Governing Council,” said Alec Sanguinetti, CD—director general & CEO of CHTA. “Sir Royston has been at the forefront of sustainable tourism issues from the very beginning working tirelessly to ensure the sustainability of the Caribbean hospitality industry, and has always exhibited the necessary dedication, perseverance and professionalism.”
WASHINTON, D.C.—Washington D.C.’s Willard InterContinental Hotel, a leader in sustainable hospitality, has released its second Sustainability Report. The new report, summarizing its 2008 activities, follows Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria (GSTC). The report highlights the results of the hotel’s strategy based on the “triple bottom line” of economic prosperity, social responsibility and environmental protection. The report examines the Willard’s environmental and social performance against the previous year’s report of the hotel’s sustainable development initiatives which began in 2005 as “Willard InterContinental, The Next 100 Years.” The new report also benchmarks against the hotel’s first Sustainable Development (SD) Report for 2007, published in 2008 according to Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards.
LOS ANGELES—Commercial carpet manufacturer Bentley Prince Street, Inc. announced that it has received a third-party verified Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) for its broadloom products. This achievement marks the first time a North American broadloom carpet product has received an EPD, the international gold standard for illustrating the various aspects of a product’s performance.
BOULDER, CO.—Renewable Choice Energy, a national provider of renewable energy credits and carbon offsets, has launched Green Your Event to empower meeting and event planners at hotels and event centers to support wind power and carbon reduction by offsetting event facilities, attendee travel, and more.
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.—My Emissions Exchange announced the start of a new global market for individual households and businesses to reduce their personal carbon emissions and be eligible to earn money for their efforts. carbon footprint and learn ways to reduce emissions.
BANGKOK, THAILAND—As part of its commitment to mitigate climate change, Six Senses—a leading luxury resort and spa development and management company—has joined aid agencies, governments and private companies in supporting carbon emission mitigation projects. The aim of its latest initiative, Six Senses Reforestation Project, is to curb the threat of severe climate change caused by human-made hydrocarbon emissions and greenhouse gases caused by the burning of fossil fuels. Six Senses Reforestation Project has planted the first 300 trees in northern Thailand in association with the UNESCO approved Earth Charter Foundation. By planting trees on deforested land, Six Senses offsets carbon emissions and helps to protect the land for future generations.
DUBAI, U.A.E.—The Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) has launched an initiative to reduce carbon emissions (CO2) in the region’s hospitality industry by 20 percent by the year 2011. The launch is together with the Dubai Green Tourism Award which will be in line with World Environment Day. The initiatives are all part of the department’s sustainable tourism agenda for the emirate. The Dubai Green Tourism Award, to be presented in December 2009, is expected to attract 200 hotels from three, four and five stars and deluxe hotel apartments that are eligible to compete for the annual honors. The initiatives were announced at a press conference held recently at the InterContinental Hotel Dubai Festival City.
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