AH&LA Launches Green Guidelines Challenge for Hotels

  • AH&LA
  • 04.23.09
The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) is challenging hoteliers across the country to track and improve their green business operations by taking the AH&LA Green Guidelines Challenge.

Participants completing the challenge will be able to identify themselves as eco-friendly establishments based on benchmarking their operation procedures against AH&LA’s 11 minimum green guidelines, released in November 2008 by the association’s Green Task Force.  The winner of the six-month challenge will also receive a green prize package from an allied AH&LA member.

The challenge begins when AH&LA members receive a tracking tool to aid their measurement of occupancy statistics, monetary and energy expenditures and return on investment (ROI) from specific green practices.  To enter the challenge, participants must complete the online Green Guidelines Challenge survey by October 1, 2009.  AH&LA members who successfully implement practices in line with any of the 11 guidelines are also encouraged to write in their success stories and best practices to be considered for the green prize package and featured on the association’s Green Resource Center Web site.  Throughout the challenge, members can ask operations questions directly to AH&LA’s Green Guru.  Properties who are not AH&LA members are also encouraged to take the challenge to augment their eco-friendly practices, though they will not be eligible for the challenge prize or space on AH&LA’s Web site.

Based on existing environmental certification programs, including Green Seal, Green Globe, Green Key and LEED, along with various state certification programs, the 11 minimum green guidelines define ways to give hotel owners and operators opportunities to reduce operating costs and environmental impacts through reduced utility consumption, recycling programs, employee training and supply chain management.  The guidelines also allow hotels to improve their fiscal performance by tracking ROI against their general statistics.  Some examples of estimated savings properties* can achieve include:

  • $35,478 / 298,961 kilowatt-hours (kwh) by installing digital thermostats in guestrooms and throughout a hotel.
  • $17,029 / 141,912 kwh by replacing existing incandescent lamps with compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).
  • $35,478 / 1,182,600 gallons of water as a result of installing 2.5-gallons per minute (or less) showerheads in all guestroom baths and any employee shower areas.
Procedural details for implementing each green guideline are available on the AH&LA Green Resource Center Web site, and detailed explanations of each will be sent to AH&LA members throughout the initial 11 weeks of the challenge. 

Selected success stories from the Green Guidelines Challenge will be featured on AH&LA’s Web site as new Green Best Practices, part of a growing list of actionable strategies, case studies and timely green news from AH&LA members leading the way to a more eco-friendly hospitality community.

To take the Green Guidelines Challenge and for more information on AH&LA’s green initiatives, please visit the Green Resource Center Web site. 
*Estimates based on a 300-room hotel.

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