Goal: Hilton Hotels sought to establish a corporate-wide recycling program to responsibly dispose of older hotel TVs, while upgrading to innovative new energy-efficient television sets to heighten the in-room guest experience and reduce energy costs.
Solution: LG Electronics recognizes the hospitality industry’s need to responsibly recycle older guestroom televisions, a goal that aligns with Hilton’s “Travel with Purpose” corporate social responsibility platform that leverages the hotel giant’s global footprint and scale to provide opportunities, strengthen communities and preserve the environment. In conjunction with Global Sustainability Solutions (GSS)—a woman-owned business that specializes in the transportation and recycling of old TV sets as well as the installation of new ones—LG is helping Hilton create a corporate-wide program by offsetting recycling costs.
Results: To kick off its nationwide program, Hilton launched a pilot program at its 378-room Newark Airport property to recycle old guestroom televisions. Working with LG and GSS, the hotel responsibly recycled nearly 400 older flat-panel hotel TVs. Hilton replaced each set with a new 43-inch Energy Star® certified LG flat screen TV that delivers a more engaging guest experience. The project was completed in just four days’ time—two days earlier than anticipated, minimizing impact on guests. Due to the pilot’s success, LG and Hilton are extending the program into 2018 with plans to replace old sets with LG 4K Ultra HD hotel TVs, while continuing their shared commitment to responsible electronics recycling.
TVs represent one of the largest contributors to electronic waste, which is the fastest growing solid waste stream in the world. Many states, including the Hilton Newark Airport property’s home state of New Jersey, mandate e-waste recycling programs through legislation that outlaws landfilling televisions. Committed to minimizing waste and fostering a healthy environment by providing properties a sustainable solution for the disposal of existing TVs, Hilton needed to find partners that would help facilitate the recycling of the existing sets and retrofit new sets of a high quality and caliber all during hotel occupancy.
This large project was the result of successful collaboration among multiple stakeholders from the lodging, manufacturing, electronics and recycling industries. Together, the team needed to follow a strict timeline and stay in constant communication to achieve project goals and minimize disruption to the hotel’s day-to-day activities and guests.
To do so, Hilton and LG engaged GSS to oversee the recycling of the old TVs and installation of the new TVs. “Partnering with diverse businesses to further support local job creation and improve the environment is of the utmost importance at Hilton, where we hold sustainability in the highest regard,” explains Judy Pines, Director of Sustainability and Responsible Sourcing, at Hilton, which has reduced its waste output by nearly 30 percent and reduced carbon emissions by 24 percent since 2009.
After the team worked together to remove the units to be recycled, they were staged in one area of the hotel and GSS was able to easily load the TVs for transportation to the offsite recycling facility in a synchronous order.
Paul Grande, General Manager at the Hilton Newark Airport, is extremely satisfied with the TV recycling process: “The pre-planning was very easy and all parties involved were very thorough with the planning and execution. Each group had a set role which is what made this project so seamless and such a huge success,” he says.
The Transition: Enhancing the In-Room Experience
The Hilton Newark Airport property chose LG 43-inch flat screen TVs to replace 378 older 32-inch guestroom units. GSS also installed 49-inch LG hotel TVs in the Hilton’s suites. As the industry leader in hotel TVs, LG offers hoteliers and guests alike the ease of use, seamless connectivity, innovative technology and superior quality for unparalleled guest experiences.
Pines says LG and Hilton will continue to enhance guest experiences by continuing this program through 2018. LG 4K Ultra HD Smart Hotel TVs will be installed during the 2017-2018 recycling project. Leading the hospitality industry’s transition to 4K Ultra HD technology with four times the resolution of conventional HDTVs, LG 4K hotel TVs deliver crisp pictures and bold colors from wide viewing angles for an immersive viewing experience that brings the home theater experience into the hotel room.
Positively Impacting the Environment
Over the past year, LG Electronics USA drove the collection and responsible recycling of 24,234 tons of used electronics. Diverting solid waste from landfills, this avoided the release of the equivalent of more than 63,714 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere. The positive environmental impact of LG’s recycling is equal to taking 12,209 passenger cars off the road for a year or saving enough electricity to power 8,535 U.S. homes for a year, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). LG encourages customers to replace recycled electronics with new, more energy efficient Energy Star certified LG TV and monitors.
Supporting its commitment to responsible recycling, LG Electronics is the world’s first “Global e-Stewards Enterprise.” The e-Stewards standard, developed by the Basel Action Network, is the world’s most rigorous certification program for electronics recyclers. It prevents the export and dumping of toxic electronic waste in developing countries and calls for safeguards to protect private data and ensure that recycling plant workers are not exposed to toxic materials.
“By using a third-party partner like Global Sustainability Solutions that works with e-Steward certified recycling facilities, we’re proud to help Hilton drive the use of environmentally protective practices,” said Christine Ackerson, Head of Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility at LG Electronics USA. “LG’s leadership in this area reflects our strong commitment to helping the lodging industry implement responsible electronics recycling.”
The Hilton corporate-wide program builds on LG’s leadership in electronics recycling. LG received the Gold Tier Award, the top-level recognition in the EPA’s “Sustainable Materials Management Electronics Challenge,” by increasing the amount of used electronics collected for reuse and recycle, striving to send 100 percent of used electronics collected to certified third-party recyclers, and publicly sharing detailed information about its electronic management practices. This special recognition from the EPA follows other electronics recycling honors for LG, including the Consumer Technology Association’s e-Cycling Initiative Leader Award and the Design for Recycling® Award from the world’s leading recycling industry group, the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries. ISRI’s highest honor recognized LG for developing TVs with greener features designed to reduce the environmental load at every stage of the product lifecycle.