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News Blog

The News Blog gives Glenn Hasek, publisher and editor of Green Lodging News, an opportunity to comment, in just a few paragraphs, on industry news and trends. A more condensed version of Publisher’s Point of View, the News Blog is updated on either Wednesday or Thursday each week. Want to step in as a guest blogger? Or, have some news to share for the News Blog? To contact Glenn Hasek, call (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at: editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

News Blog

Home News Blog
The News Blog gives Glenn Hasek, publisher and editor of Green Lodging News, an opportunity to comment, in just a few paragraphs, on industry news and trends. A more condensed version of Publisher’s Point of View, the News Blog is updated on either Wednesday or Thursday each week. Want to step in as a guest blogger? Or, have some news to share for the News Blog? To contact Glenn Hasek, call (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at: editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

Fairmont Washington, D.C. Planning August Sustainability Fair

It is a great idea and worth replicating at your hotel—a Sustainability Fair. The Fairmont Washington, D.C. will hold its eighth annual Sustainability Fair on Friday, August 25 from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. in the hotel’s Colonnade Room. Diana K. Bulger, Area Director, Public Relations for the 413-room property, has been involved in all eight fairs. At first it was called the Green Fair, she says. Today it is an event that draws from 200 to 300 people. “Every year it gets bigger,” Bulger says. The fair is the idea of the hotel’s sustainability team. “We are always trying...

Highlights from MGM Resorts’ 2016 CSR Report

MGM Resorts International recently released its 2016 Annual Corporate Social Responsibility Report. I recently wrote about Hersha Hospitality Trust’s 2016 Sustainability Report and just posted about the Javits Center releasing its first Sustainability Report. It must be reporting season. MGM Resorts’ report describes its CSR philosophy, governance and culture, and summarizes its developments in the pillars of Diversity and Inclusion, Philanthropy and Community Engagement and Environmental Sustainability. The report is long—173 pages—but MGM has a lot of good stories to tell. For example, in 2016, 5,600 employees donated 103,000 volunteer hours of community service. MGM achieved LEED Gold certification...

The Death of Phone Conversation?

Allow me to move away from green lodging this week—although it does impact green lodging—and write a bit about communication. Phone communication. You remember, the kind that Alexander Graham Bell invented? (“Mr. Watson--come here--I want to see you.”) Perhaps this rant will not solve a thing but if one person is affected positively by it, I will consider it a success. My main rant: What is it about talking on the phone that scares so many people today? And I mean run for the hills level of scared. Are people just so busy that they cannot take even a...

Highlights from Hersha’s Recently Released 2016 Sustainability Report

Hersha Hospitality Trust recently made its 2016 Sustainability Report (its third annual) available to the public. Results in the report relate back to 2010 when Hersha launched its EarthView program. According to Hersha, it has accumulated $6.8 million in energy savings since launching Earthview. Energy consumption per occupied room has been reduced by 19 percent. Some of those savings, according to Hersha Hospitality Trust CEO Jay H. Shah, are due to the implementation of guestroom energy management systems. Ninety-seven percent of Hersha hotels have been retrofitted with LED lighting. In 2016, approximately 10 percent of Hersha’s hotels had electric...

Planet Ocean Underwater Hotel Venture Formally Announced

We have all heard of hotels being under water before—but literally? It could happen if entrepreneur Tony Webb gets enough support for his Planet Ocean Underwater Hotel venture. Watch for more details soon on Green Lodging News. Here is what we know so far: Late last month, Webb issued a press release formally inviting the hotel industry and prominent resort properties to partner with his company and open the world’s first underwater luxury boutique hotel. The first hotel would be located in Cuban waters. The company has selected 15 ideal sites for its underwater hotels and its vital coral...

DOE Release 2017 Better Buildings Progress Report

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced the energy-efficiency progress made by the 345 leading public and private sector organizations in the Better Buildings Challenge. These efforts have led to a combined 240 trillion Btus and an estimated $1.9 billion in cumulative energy and cost savings. These results are summarized in the 2017 Better Buildings Progress Report that highlights accomplishments across the broader Better Buildings Initiative. More than 900 organizations across many diverse sectors are now part of the Better Buildings Initiative. These partners represent more than 13 percent of total U.S. commercial building space, about 12 percent...

Sustainability in the Forefront at Upcoming NRA Show

The National Restaurant Association (NRA) Show is just 10 days away. It will run from May 20 to 23 and take place at McCormick Place in Chicago. If you plan to walk the show floor, give yourself at least a couple of days as more than 2,000 companies (2,219 at last count) are expected to be exhibiting. Many of those exhibitors will be featuring products and equipment that can help you reduce energy, water and waste. Some of those exhibitors are 2017 Kitchen Innovations Award recipients. Ecolab, for example, was recently recognized with a Kitchen Innovations Award for its...

Marriott, Wyndham, Disney on 100 Best Corporate Citizens List

Corporate Responsibility Magazine just announced its list of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens. This is the 18th year for the list. To appear on the list a company must first appear among the Russell 1000. The Russell 1000 is the list of the 1,000 largest U.S. public companies. For each company, 260 data points of publicly available disclosure and performance measurements were considered. Each company was ranked in seven categories: environment, climate change, employee relations, human rights, corporate governance, financial performance, and philanthropy and community support. There were only three lodging companies that made this year’s top 100 list:...

Rubbermaid Study Gauges Millennial Commitment to Sustainability

If you are looking to retain Millennials, you may want to pay attention to their preferences for working for companies that pay attention to sustainability. Absent a sustainability program you will not lose everyone but you may lose your best and brightest. According to a new study, “Recycling in the Workplace: A Millennial View”, conducted by Lightspeed, a globally integrated research organization, on behalf of Rubbermaid Commercial Products (RCP), nearly one in 10 Millennials would go so far as quitting their jobs if they found out their current employer was not sustainable. More than 1,000 Millennials participated in the...

GBTA Study: Few Travel Management Professionals Incentivize Travelers to Stay at Green Hotels

In covering green lodging I have often heard about companies that incentivize their business travelers to stay in hotels with sustainable practices. Turns out the practice may be less common than I thought. According to a new study released by the GBTA Foundation, the research and education arm of the Global Business Travel Assn., in partnership with AIG Travel, only one in six travel management professionals (16 percent) currently incentivize their business travelers to stay in hotels with sustainable practices. Even fewer (4 percent) require travelers to book suppliers with sustainable practices. The GBTA Foundation conducted an online survey...