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Guest Columns

Green Lodging News provides a forum for anyone in the lodging industry to offer their take on a particular topic. All are welcome to participate. Submissions should be approximately 800 words and should include a photo of the writer. Contact Glenn Hasek, editor, at (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at: editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

Guest Columns

Home Guest Columns
Green Lodging News provides a forum for anyone in the lodging industry to offer their take on a particular topic. All are welcome to participate. Submissions should be approximately 800 words and should include a photo of the writer. Contact Glenn Hasek, editor, at (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at: editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

Thirdhand Smoke a New Concern for Hotel Properties

On January 30, 2014, the U.S. Federal News Service and the University of California at Riverside issued the following alert: “Do not smoke and do not allow yourself to be exposed to smoke, because secondhand smoke and thirdhand smoke are just as deadly as firsthand smoke. While firsthand smoke refers to the smoke inhaled by a smoker and secondhand smoke to the exhaled smoke and other substances emanating from a burning cigarette that can get inhaled by others, thirdhand smoke is the secondhand smoke that gets left on the surfaces of objects, ages over time, and becomes progressively more toxic.” This...

New Ceiling Fan Standards Will Keep Consumer Bills Cool

Temperatures may be cooling across the country, but new ceiling fan energy efficiency standards announced recently mean that consumers will stay comfortable in years to come while paying less on their energy bills. With an estimated 80 million U.S. households owning at least one ceiling fan, the energy and dollar savings will really add up under this update required by federal law to cut energy waste. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) projects the new standards will cut the energy use of ceiling fans by about 26 percent, resulting in national savings of about 200 billion kilowatt-hours of energy over...

Energy Management 101

Start discussing a technical topic and watch as people’s eyes glaze over, even if those people are fully aware that it’s something they should be paying attention to. Embarking on a path toward a more sustainable and energy efficient hotel operation qualifies as one of these “glazed” subjects, so to eliminate any possibility of eyelid fatigue, let’s talk about this extremely important issue in terms of something just a bit more fun—golf. A Golf Analogy Tired of listening to your old college buddies boast about how well they’re scoring on the course, you finally decide to up your game. All indications...

Hotels Hit with Fees for Not Complying with Energy Benchmarking Rules

In the United States, 16 locations, ranging from entire state policies to county laws, require some type of energy benchmarking. Many regulations are new, and the cumbersome process is costing hotels thousands of dollars every year. Energy benchmarking—the process of tracking a building’s annual energy use and using a standard metric to compare the building’s performance against past performance and to its peers nationwide—is gaining momentum as businesses and building owners see huge savings in crunching the numbers and making small adjustments to their energy use. But as more cities and states adopt annual benchmarking regulations, the new procedures and...

Improving Your Bottom Line with Refrigeration Maintenance

Hotel venues of all types contain many plug-in refrigeration and freezer units (“coolers”).  Examples include plug-in refrigerators and freezers in kitchen/foodservice areas, vending machines, ice machines, beverage merchandisers, and the like. These appliances contain a condenser coil unit that is responsible for rejecting to the atmosphere the heat that is extracted from the enclosure being cooled. To do this job effectively, these coils need to have good airflow so that good heat transfer is achieved. Unfortunately, since the coils are exposed to the atmosphere, they become progressively clogged with dust and other debris over time (see photo at right...

Bipolar Ionization Technology & Indoor Air Quality

It’s no secret that the concerns towards the indoor air we breathe are growing, and as a result, people are doing something about it. That’s great news, because according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), most Americans spend up to 90 percent of their time indoors. The EPA has also named indoor air quality as one of the top five health threats in the United States. So why the increased apprehension towards indoor air quality (IAQ)? The 2015 outbreak of Legionnaires Disease in New York City, which took 12 lives, was a wakeup call. But let’s look at evidence that affects...

Hotels Hit with Fees for Not Complying with Energy Benchmarking Rules

In the United States, 16 locations, ranging from entire state policies to county laws, require some type of energy benchmarking. Many regulations are new, and the cumbersome process is costing hotels thousands of dollars every year. Energy benchmarking—the process of tracking a building’s annual energy use and using a standard metric to compare the building’s performance against past performance and to its peers nationwide—is gaining momentum as businesses and building owners see huge savings in crunching the numbers and making small adjustments to their energy use. But as more cities and states adopt annual benchmarking regulations, the new procedures and...

A Hotelier’s Reflection on Environmental Consciousness

Writing about environmental sustainability issues is not the most gratifying task. You are invited, dear reader, to please continue reading, though. This article does not attempt to stimulate guilt or parent-ego induced finger wagging. What follows are insights, learnings, thoughts and musings from a hotelier viewing the impact—particularly the hospitality industry’s impact on the environment. These thoughts are based on insights stemming from eight years of hospitality related environmental sustainability consulting work. It is stating subjective observations about possible changes in value perception of a person, a profession and an industry. Hotel Business A hotel is an organization or economic system...

How The Peninsula New York Topped the Hotel Category in the Zero Waste Challenge

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...

Bio-digesters: One Highly Effective Way to Manage Food Waste Flow

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...