NEWH - Spring 2011 - (Page 12)

sustainability point of view From left: A rendering of the lobby of Adoba Eco Hotel & Suites; the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve Boardwalk. waste not, want not By Rachel Long “The need for ecological balance has never been greater.” That was how Jennifer McAllister, NDC Construction, summed up the sustainable issues facing the hospitality community at the recent NEWH Leadership Conference in Orlando, January 14-16th. NEWH Sustainable Hospitality presented three educational sessions at the conference, covering topics from sustainable product certification and Florida’s coastal ecology to a new, sustainably conceived hotel brand. NEWH VP sustainable hospitality David Mahood, Olive Hospitality Consulting, and NEWH director sustainable hospitality Dina Belon, Rush Hospitality, shared responsibility for programming— helping to advance NEWH’s ongoing commitment to promote environmental change and goodwill. Says Mahood, “The conference exemplifies NEWH’s passion for advancing sustainability through the pathways of its industry. By offering the vision of a new sustainable hotel brand, the wisdom of sustainable producers and educators, and the compelling scientific research of some of Florida’s top coastal ecologists, we are furthering our committee’s mission of educating our expansive membership.” Glenn Hasek, Green Lodging News, moderated “A Discussion of Sustainable Products and Certifications.” Panelists included Kenneth Koneck, Valley Forge Fabrics; Mahood; John Reader, Desso Carpets; and Lora Spran, Walt Disney. For carpet and textiles, panelists examined applicable certifications, why they are important, and differing approaches to certification for sustainable products and/or business practices. They also emphasized lifecycle assessment and analysis as important aspects of product review. Panelists agreed on a key business reason to go green: They cited a study noting that 70 percent of corporate travelers request sustainability as a hallmark of their lodging of choice. Focused on creating hospitality development that helps preserve Florida’s waters and coasts, McAllister’s panel, “Beware of the Riptide,” combined the expertise of Dr. Ray Carthy, Florida Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit (U.S. Geological Survey); Dr. Mike Shirley, Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve and Florida East Coast Aquatic Preserve Program; and Dr. Kirt W. Rusenko, Gumbo Limbo Nature Center. Shirley warns, “If we continue to use resources the way we have been using them, we will lose the benefits of them. It will really hit our economy as well as our quality of life.” Carthy emphasized early planning to minimize to the effect of the built environment on aquatic creatures, particularly Florida’s sea turtles. Even a building’s shading of a beach will affect incubation temperatures of the sand; light will attract sea turtles (even through beach bonfires, for example); and magnetic signatures may affect the ability of animals to nest. “These effects need to be minimized in the construction and design phase,” says Carthy. Yet change may be demanded more by tourists than by developers, suggested Rusenko. He notes, “Largely, I tend to get the impression some of this is driven by [resort] patrons asking, ‘Where can I see a sea turtle?’” Adrienne Pumphrey of Adoba Eco Hotel & Suites, was the closing keynote speaker. Launched on Earth Day 2010 as “green from the ground up,” the hotel company now has three projects in development in the Denver area. She discussed the brand’s hallmarks: use of alternative energy; LEED certified; next-generation in IT; inspired by nature; focused on guest and staff health; and community-centered for social good. 12 spring 2011 www.newh.org tel 800.593.NEWH http://www.newh.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of NEWH - Spring 2011

NEWH-Spring 2011
Table of Contents
Chapter and NEWH News
Who’s Who
Sustainability: Competition
Sustainability: Point of View
Conference: Preview
Conference: Roundup
Design 101
Have you Seen?
Product Know-How
On the Scene
Cover Story
Project: Montage Deer Valley
Project: Courtyard Marriott
Project: Andaz
Save the Date
New Members
Partner Profiles

NEWH - Spring 2011

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