On April 22nd, Earth Day 2014, the 13 participating hotels of the Santa Fe Green Lodging (SFGL) Initiative celebrated their accomplishments at the Inn of the Governors.
Felicity Broennan, coordinator for the Santa Fe Watershed Association’ Green Lodging Program, opened the ceremony by saying that even though it is Earth Day, our SFGL participants throughout the year have been trained in sustainable practices and are now practicing Earth Day every day. She congratulated all of them on their accomplishments.
The participating hotels are Casa Cuma B and B, Eldorado Hotel, Houses of the Moon at 10,000 Waves, Hotel Santa Fe the Hacienda & Spa, Inn of the Five Graces, Inn of the Governors, Inn on the Alameda, La Fonda on the Plaza, La Posada de Santa Fe Resort & Spa, Old Santa Fe Inn, Santa Fe Inn, Santa Fe Sage Inn and Silver Saddle Motel. Twelve of the thirteen properties have achieved HospitalityGreen’s (HG) Green Concierge bronze level certification.
In December 2012, the Santa Fe Watershed Association (SFWA) launched a public-private sector collaboration, called the Santa Fe Green Lodging Initiative. The initiative was funded by a $49,700 grant awarded to the Watershed Association by the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The Initiative, spearheaded by the SFWA, worked directly with Santa Fe’s hospitality industry to save money, conserve water, and decrease chemical and carbon pollution going into their river and watershed system.
Since February 2013, HospitalityGreen LLC, a New York-based firm specializing in environmental and operations consulting services and founder of the nationally recognized Green Concierge Certification® program, provided technical assistance, green team training and customized coaching to each of the participants.
In October 2013 HospitalityGreen (HG) conducted on-site third party assessments of thirteen of the fourteen properties. The on-site assessment determined if the individual property met the rigors of the Green Concierge Certification. The certification requires that a property meet multiple standards and track resource use over time.
With data acquired from the properties and the utility companies, the participants have cumulatively saved over 2.1 million kilowatt hours of electricity with a cost savings of about $ 101,000.00. The cost savings does not include the rebates they received for lighting and electrical system upgrades, some of which are still in process. Through system and water saving features, the SFGL properties saved over 1.5 million gallons of water with a cost savings of over $27,000 annually. By switching cleaning products they eliminated over 2000 pounds of hazardous chemicals from entering our waste water treatment plant and thus the Santa Fe River.
Sam Gerberding, General Manager of the Inn of the Governors said that they were never made to feel bad about what they were doing or chastised for not doing more. Consequently, the Green Teams at the lodging properties, consisting of staff from housekeeping, food & beverage, engineering, and top management, took pride in the daily steps they made to achieving tangible resource conservation with viable economic benefits.
Evadne Giannini, Founder and CEO of HospitalityGreen LLC, said “We are honored to have been able to work with our enthusiastic colleagues in Santa Fe for the past year with wonderful engagement at every level at these extraordinary properties. We look forward to continuing to share ideas, increase everyone’s benefits and assist the businesses to help brand Santa Fe as a premier eco-tourist destination.” As Ms. Broennan said in her closing remarks, “Everyone benefits when we collaborate to take care of our natural resources: the businesses, the residents, the tourists, and the environment. It’s the new quadruple, value-added bottom line with high impact results!”
The Santa Fe Watershed Association (SFWA) builds vibrant, resilient ecosystems within the Santa Fe River Watershed using a holistic approach of restoration, education, stewardship, and advocacy.
Santa Fe Green Lodging Initiative’s growing directory of local partners includes: Santa Fe Watershed Association, Santa Fe Convention and Visitors Bureau, City of Santa Fe Environmental Services Division, New Mexico Lodging Association, Santa Fe Lodgers Association, Santa Fe Community College, New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce - Santa Fe Chapter, Inn of the Governors, La Posada de Santa Fe Resort and Spa and La Fonda on the Plaza.
HospitalityGreen LLC is a New York based consulting firm specializing in environmental and operations consulting services. HospitalityGreen partners with service-based and product-based clients throughout the hospitality, manufacturing and institutional healthcare industries, to implement sustainable business practices. Providing services for our client not to them, our goal is to create for our clients environmental capital one facility at a time.