BOSTON—Three additional hotels in the Boston area have earned an Energy Star label by documenting superior energy performance and efficiency. With the new designations, there are now eight hotels in the Hub metropolitan area that have made sufficient energy improvements to achieve an Energy Star label.
At an event on Thursday, October 4, EPA honored Boston area hoteliers, recognizing each for their facilities’ superior energy performance. Together with Boston Green Tourism, the agency lauded local hoteliers for improving energy efficiency and implementing high quality measures that ultimately improve the guest experience.
“We’re excited to see Boston’s hospitality industry take a leadership role in energy efficiency,” says Robert Varney, regional administrator for EPA’s New England office. “These hotels are setting an example, not only in New England, but across the nation. Improved energy efficiency in hotels means a cleaner environment, lower energy costs, and a great green choice for hotel visitors.”
Energy Star selectively awards the prestigious label to facilities whose energy consumption ranks in the top 25 percent of industry energy performance nationwide. Only 25 hotels across New England have earned the Energy Star label to date, of which 21 are located in Massachusetts. The other four hotels with Energy Star status are in Connecticut.
“These hotels are leading the way in our efforts to green our tourism industry,” says James W. Hunt, Chief of Environment and Energy for the City of Boston. “Energy efficiency is good for public health and the environment, but it is also good for these businesses’ bottom line. This EPA Energy Star recognition will demonstrate to all visitors to these hotels that you don’t need all the lights to shine.”
An Elite Group of Energy Savers
The three hotels in the Boston area with new Energy Star designations include: Doubletree Guest Suites (Boston); Hyatt Harborside (Boston); and Royal Sonesta Hotel (Cambridge). The five Boston area hotels that have already achieved an Energy Star label include: Comfort Inn & Suites (Revere); Irving House at Harvard (Cambridge); Jurys Boston Hotel; Lenox Hotel (Boston); and Sheraton Boston Hotel.
The recognition ceremony, held at Jurys Hotel Boston, also included a guided, “behind the scenes” tour of the award-winning hotel. Of particular note was an ozone laundry system and upgraded, high-quality Energy Star qualified lighting throughout the facility, including guestrooms. EPA estimates that Jurys Boston Hotel uses 28 percent less energy than industry average, avoiding more than 2 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
There are many practical ways hotels and the hospitality industry can incorporate more environmentally friendly practices into their operations, without sacrificing an enjoyable experience for paying customers. A simple step is to install energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs in lamps and other lighting fixtures. Some hotels have upgraded to programmable in-room thermostats to better control heating and cooling and reduce energy use when rooms are unoccupied. Lavatories can be updated to improve water efficiency. Laundry facilities can be updated to conserve both energy and water.
America’s desire for environmentally friendly buildings is growing, and superior energy efficiency—identified by the Energy Star—is a critical element of green building. EPA has awarded the prestigious Energy Star to more than 3,200 buildings for their energy efficiency. These buildings represent almost 575 million square feet, save an estimated $600 million annually in lower energy bills, and prevent almost 11 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions, equal to emissions from almost 900,000 vehicles.
A joint program of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy, Energy Star is a voluntary partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through increased energy efficiency. In 2006, Americans, through the Energy Star program, saved $14 billion on energy bills and reduced 37 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, which is the equivalent of taking 25 million vehicles off the road for one year.
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