Why should hotels be green?

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Haven’t you heard? Being green goes directly to your bottom line. Being green goes directly to a higher long-term value of your property. Being green goes directly to your front doors which open wide to bring guests back again and again. Being green goes directly to keeping staff long-term because management clearly cares for their health and well-being.

How does being green translate to your bottom line? When energy-saving measures are introduced, such as energy management systems, fluorescent bulbs, ceiling fans, linen cards, lights out cards, motion sensors for public rest rooms, meeting rooms, exercise rooms, etc., energy bills are much reduced.

When water-saving equipment and techniques are introduced, such as low-flow shower heads, 1.5 gpm aerators, serving water on request only in restaurants, 1.6 gpm dishwashing valves, low-flow toilets, waterless urinals, toilet tank fill diverters in older toilets and linen cards, water bills are reduced dramatically. A GM received an award for reducing water usage at his property by two million gallons in one year. How? He fired the chef! The chef was well known for having water running in 4 or 5 sinks at a time defrosting food.

Waste hauling is a huge expense for a hotel which can be lowered drastically through recycling and avoiding wastefully-packaged products. Hoteliers can ask vendors to deliver products in minimal wrapping. Vendors can be asked to deliver products one day, and pick up the packaging materials the next day. The Intercontinental started a recycling program and hired staff to separate the materials. Management was absolutely astonished to find that these employees were pulling $1,000 a MONTH of hotel property out of the waste stream—napkins, towels, spoons, etc.—all of which had clearly been discarded prior to recycling. A Hyatt reduced their waste hauling by 80%! They had the same experience as the Intercontinental hotel, except their staff was pulling $3,000 to $10,000 a month of hotel property out of the waste stream.

Being green means guests, staff and management are healthier. There’s just no doubt that when odors, fumes, soot, droplets and residues of toxic, poisonous chemicals are not in the air, on our food or on anything we touch, we are not absorbing or breathing them. Sooner or later all properties will be sold, and any green property will demand a higher price because it’s value is much enhanced by lower utility bills per square foot, its healthier aspects and owner care.

None of us can be really green without the smart, innovative vendors, like South Jersey Paper Products, who provide green products and services. Being green means supporting green vendors, listening to their sales staff, purchasing their products and services and cheering them on.

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