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Publisher's Point of View

Each week, Glenn Hasek, publisher and editor of Green Lodging News, will address the hottest industry topics. Sometimes hard hitting, his column will challenge the industry’s leaders to take action. At other times, he will lift up the industry’s environmental champions. “Point of View” is a column you will not want to miss. To contact Glenn Hasek, call (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at: editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

Publisher's Point of View

Home Publisher's Point of View
Each week, Glenn Hasek, publisher and editor of Green Lodging News, will address the hottest industry topics. Sometimes hard hitting, his column will challenge the industry’s leaders to take action. At other times, he will lift up the industry’s environmental champions. “Point of View” is a column you will not want to miss. To contact Glenn Hasek, call (813) 510-3868, or by e-mail at: editor@greenlodgingnews.com.

More Than Ever, Solar Makes Sense for U.S. Hotel Industry

Green Lodging News’ list of Solar Powered hotels in its Renewable Energy All Stars section grew by yet another this past week with the announcement of the completion of a 269 kW photovoltaic system at the Ramada Silicon Valley in Sunnyvale, Calif. The installation is projected to produce 426,000 kWh of power annually. The electricity generated by the system is expected to power at least 70 percent of the hotel’s 175 guestrooms, public lighting and three EV charging stations. The clean energy produced by the system is expected to equal a reduction of 8,727 tons of CO2 over 25 years or...

Sustainability Still Takes Back Seat to Customer Service

May it be a lesson for all of us: Customer service still comes first. You may have the greenest brand, the most robust sustainability program, and offset every bit of your environmental impact. All of that will not matter in the least if an associate or associates on your team slip up and make a critical mistake that results in injury, death, or scalded reputation. I am sure you all saw the video of the United Airlines passenger—a doctor—forcibly removed from a plane this past week. United Airlines needed the seat for an employee and asked the passenger to leave....

Teen Dies—A Grim Reminder of Carbon Monoxide Danger

It was more than 10 years ago now that I wrote a column about the dangers of carbon monoxide. Too many innocent hotel guests have been killed by it. In the first annual Green Lodging Survey last year, Greenview and Green Lodging News asked survey participants, “Are tests for carbon monoxide and radon regularly conducted?” Globally, 52 percent said yes. In the U.S., 60 percent said yes. While the question was not 100 percent specific to carbon monoxide, it does indicate there are many who do not monitor for unsafe levels of carbon monoxide. On April 1 this month, a...

Green-Focused Ellis Hotel Finds Success with Themed Floors, Wellness Room

When Tom LaVaccare came up with the idea of a Women’s Only Floor at the Ellis Hotel in Atlanta, he struck PR gold. After implementation of the floor, the 127-room property was featured on NBC News, on CNBC, and by other major media organizations. The Women’s Only Floor (10th floor) is just one of the unique features of the historic hotel that also includes a Fresh Air Floor (another idea of Tom’s and on the 15th floor), a Wellness Room (16th floor), and a Pet-Friendly Floor (3rd floor). Guests pay from $20 to $40 more per night to stay...

Pilot Projects’ Aim: Reduce Food Waste in Hotel Industry

What to do about food waste has been a hot topic growing even hotter in recent years. Most efforts have targeted the back end of the food waste problem—who to send it to (local pig farmer?), how to make it smaller or disappear (grinder, bio-digester or local composter maybe?). From what I have seen, not enough has been done in our industry to address the entire “lifecycle” of food waste. That is why I was happy to read this past week that the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), with support from The Rockefeller Foundation, and the American Hotel & Lodging...

World Water Day, Earth Hour, Earth Day—All Coming Soon

In the next month there will be several important opportunities to engage with your guests and associates around conservation and efficiency. The first is World Water Day, March 22. Our industry is a huge consumer of water and can do a lot to reduce its impact—whether through low-flow fixtures, water-efficient laundry and kitchen equipment, advanced green cleaning and maintenance systems, etc. Be mindful of your water impact on World Water Day. Be thankful for what you have as well. Today, there are more than 663 million people living without a safe water supply close to home, spending countless hours...

White House Message: ENERGY STAR Not Worth Saving

In this column I have purposely dodged politics over the years but reports this week about the elimination of the ENERGY STAR program require comment here. In case you missed it, according to The Washington Post and other sources, a new White House proposal would kill the highly successful ENERGY STAR program. Hoteliers of all political parties should be concerned about this possibility. The ENERGY STAR is clearly a program worth fighting for. According to Kateri Callahan, President of the Alliance to Save Energy, “ENERGY STAR is a hugely successful program—the most successful public-private partnership we’ve ever had, with more...

QW ESOP Trust a Rare Example of Sharing the Work, Sharing the Wealth

If a green lodging hall of fame existed, Dennis Quaintance would certainly be in it. I first chatted with Dennis almost 10 years ago when his Quaintance-Weaver Restaurants and Hotels (QW) was building the Proximity Hotel in Greensboro, N.C. At that time the goal was LEED Gold for the 147-room property that features a solar hot water heating system on its roof and other energy-saving features. The Proximity later became the first hotel to earn the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Platinum level of certification. Quite an achievement. This past fall, Dennis and the other founders of QW announced that,...

New USGBC Report Shines Light on Meeting Venue Best Practices

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) recently released its LEED in Motion: Venues report. Like Greenview’s Green Venue Report, the LEED in Motion: Venues report shines a light on the green best practices of convention centers. Unique to the LEED in Motion: Venues report is its focus on other venues such as sports venues, performing arts centers, community centers and public assembly spaces. Each of the LEED certified convention centers featured in the report are impressive in their own way. Be sure to take a look at this recent report. Convention centers, sports venues and the other types of meeting spaces can...

Coming May 1: The Launch of the Green Lodging Trends Report Survey

The launch of the second annual Green Lodging Trends Report, a survey to assess and catalyze green innovation, best practices, and awareness regarding the state of sustainability across hotels worldwide, will launch on May 1. The Trends Report is a joint project of Green Lodging News and Greenview and covers topic areas ranging from air quality to energy management to kitchen and laundry and more. This year’s survey will build on last year’s and will include new questions meant to capture innovative best practices that have emerged in the last year. The survey also will include many of the...