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MCLEAN, VA.—Hilton announced that all 750 properties across its All Suites brands will recycle discarded soap and amenity bottles and donate them to reduce hygiene-related illnesses for communities in need. Marking the first time in the industry this is required as a brand standard, it is a major expansion of what is already the industry’s largest soap recycling program that will now include 1,370 hotels participating across Hilton’s portfolio. Hilton’s All Suites brands include Embassy Suites by Hilton, Homewood Suites by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton. They comprise nearly 15 percent of Hilton’s current portfolio and 29 percent of its pipeline, and the new brand standard will nearly double the number of hotels participating in the soap-recycling program. Through its partnerships with Clean the World and other organizations, Hilton’s hotels have already collected more than one million pounds of partially-used soap, which have been recycled into more than four million new bars of soap. This process has also prevented more than 570 tons of waste going to landfills.
LENZING, AUSTRIA—Lenzing achieved another milestone in its innovation heritage in the textile industry by developing a TENCEL fiber based on cotton fabric waste. Lenzing is the first manufacturer worldwide to offer such cellulose fibers incorporating recycled materials on a commercial scale.
NATIONAL REPORT—According to the most recent AH&LA/AHLEF/STR Lodging Survey, 64 percent of U.S. hotels have a recycling program. That percentage rises to 90 percent in the luxury and upper upscale segments. Most of the major hotel companies have established goals for reducing waste. One example: Hilton Worldwide had a 2015 goal to divert waste from landfills by 25 percent in the Americas and Asia Pacific. Even as the industry has made progress in waste reduction, inefficiencies remain in the waste compacting and pickup process. Oftentimes, compactor breakdowns or operator missteps are not caught and haulers make unnecessary pickups, increasing the total cost of ownership of a compactor. Fortunately, several companies have developed systems that effectively monitor compactor performance. Gabe Vinizki, V.P. Business Development for Toronto based PragmaTech Waste Solutions, says his company’s Pandora Intelligent Networks platform can typically cut 30 to 50 percent off a customer’s waste haulage bill. Using smart sensors that communicate with a nearby microcomputer and modem, information can be sent to PragmaTech, the hotel owner or other contact, or even the company doing the hauling.
ODESSA, FLA.—Hasek Communications, the Odessa, Fla.-based publisher of Green Lodging News, welcomes reCollect2 as a Founding Sponsor. The company is the creator of the reCollect2, an in-room recycling receptacle. The reCollect2 is a simple, attractive and effective recycling solution for both guestrooms and in-office recycling. Each reCollect2 set includes two matching 10 qt. bins that rest in a set-base with the choice of imprinted messaging.
The results of the New York City Mayor’s Zero Waste Challenge were recently revealed, with The Peninsula New York emerging tops in the hotel category. The Peninsula was able to double its diversion rate in just a few months during the Challenge, in the process, emerging as a role model just in time for New York City’s new commercial organics rule. Beginning July 19, 2016, certain New York City businesses are required by law to separate their organic waste for beneficial use (composting, anaerobic digestion or other). Among those affected are food service establishments in hotels with 150 or more rooms, like the Peninsula New York. “Food waste is a big contributor to overall waste,” said Maya Shenkman, Director of Hotel Services at Great Forest, Inc., which participated in the Mayor’s Zero Waste Challenge as a consultant, helping The Peninsula New York and other companies reach their goals.
BRUSSELS—Radisson Blu announced its new partnership with the Soap for Hope program, which recycles used hotel soaps to create fresh bars for distribution in local communities with limited access to hygiene and sanitation. The Soap for Hope program works in partnership with Sealed Air, a leader in food safety and security, facility hygiene and product protection. Soap for Hope was pioneered by Sealed Air to save lives by giving free soap to communities with limited access to soap, to create local entrepreneurs and to help hotels reduce waste through recycling. Capitalizing on the success of projects in Georgia and in the Philippines, 23 Radisson Blu hotels across Africa, Indian Ocean, Middle East and APAC will collect used soap bars and pass them to Sealed Air representatives. Local entrepreneurs are then shown how to recycle the soap using an innovative cold-press method, which takes less than 10 minutes to complete and requires no running water or electricity. The used soap is then distributed to local communities.
ODESSA, FLA.—Hasek Communications, the Odessa, Fla.-based publisher of Green Lodging News, welcomes Henkel as a Green Product & Service Directory partner. With Henkel’s Dial Eco-Smart Amenity Dispensing system, hospitality establishments can reduce their plastic waste by up to 90 percent and their costs by at least 50 percent. The Dial Eco-Smart amenity line helps businesses be more profitable and more sustainable, while providing guests the confidence that comes from using the Dial soap brand.
CLEVELAND—Thundering applause. Palpable excitement. Large-scale events are marked by common elements, but one universal feature exists just behind the scenes: food waste. As attendance numbers pile up, so does the food waste. But Grind2Energy, Emerson’s large-scale food waste recycling system, is putting food waste to work—by converting it into energy. Because more food waste leads to more energy, the impact at large venues like the Huntington Convention Center of Cleveland can really add up.
PLAYA GUIONES, COSTA RICA—In a country so well known for its ecotourism and renewable energy leadership positions, it should come as no surprise that one of its hotels has earned the rare LEED Platinum certification. That is what happened this summer at the Olas Verdes Hotel in Playa Guiones, Costa Rica. Luis Pardo, General Manager of the boutique hotel with five casitas, said the property is the first surf hotel in the world and the first hotel in Costa Rica to reach the LEED Platinum level. The Olas Verdes Hotel opened last December, Pardo says. “The owners wanted to have the least impact,” he says. “They wanted to have the community involved and everyone here local.” Efficiency was built into the property’s five casitas which each have from two to four suites. Water fixtures are low-flow. All wastewater is treated and is 96 percent clean when it enters the ground. Greywater is used for irrigation and to flush some toilets. A total of 14,000 liters of rainwater storage is available. The plants are all native.
Businesses care about the sustainability of our planet and they are seeking partners who also care about the planet. Business partners adapt this green initiative in choosing hotels for lodging and facilities where they will hold their conferences. Change the light bulbs to LEDs. Put some solar panels on the roof. These are great steps to take to reduce your carbon footprint. But what do you do with your property’s food waste? A total of 1.3 billion tons of food is wasted annually worldwide. Sending solid food waste to a landfill can create more than 10 times the effect on global warming than you save with your LEDs and solar panels combined. Food wasting in a landfill decomposes in the absence of air—anaerobically—creating methane and other smells. Methane is 72 times worse for the atmosphere than CO2. That’s why it gets such attention and why no one wants a landfill at the end of their street.