Maryland Department of the EnvironmentMedia Contact:Jim Pettit(410) 537-3003Richard McIntire(410) 537-3012 (410) 716-8784-Pager
BALTIMORE, MD (June 4, 2003) -- The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), in partnership with the environmental certification organization, Green Seal, recently completed a pilot project with selected Baltimore-area hotels, in which initial steps were taken at examining a host of environmentally- responsible practices. “We do more to protect the environment when we think outside the box,” said MDE Acting Secretary Kendl Philbrick. “With this program everyone wins – hotel customers, the lodging industry, and best of all, the rest of us who benefit from wise stewardship of the environment.”Participating hotels received a comprehensive assessment of their facility and information on the potential costs savings and environmental benefits of improved technologies, products and procedures for hotels. Examples of lodging-industry practices that can improve the environment include water and power consumption, consumer packaging and utilizing certain cleaning supplies. The five participating properties were the Admiral Fell Inn, Holiday Inn Inner Harbor, Renaissance Harborplace Hotel, Sheraton Inner Harbor, and the Tremont Plaza Hotel, all in Baltimore’s harbor area. Green Seal is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting the environment by promoting the manufacture and use of environmentally responsible products and services. The organization sets environmental standards for products and services and has developed a certification program to help travelers, meeting planners, and corporate travel buyers identify environmentally responsible lodging properties. The assessments at the Baltimore hotels addressed the economic costs and potential environmental impacts of the properties’ major mechanical systems (HVAC, lighting, water) and procurement policies for equipment, paper products, and cleaning supplies based on Green Seal’s Environmental Standard for Lodging Properties. To learn more see Green Seal’s website at: http://www.greenseal.org/standards/lodgingproperties.htm. In addition to helping reduce operating costs, certification as a green hotel can increase revenue from environmentally conscious travelers and those from institutions with a green travel or meeting policy. “This project has offered an opportunity to recognize the successful environmental measures already in place at these five hotels,” Philbrick added. “We hope it will also provide motivation to other lodging properties throughout Maryland to implement ‘green’ initiatives that will benefit both their bottom-line and the environment.”For more information on the Baltimore Green Hotel Project, and environmental lodging, please contact Laura Armstrong, MDE’s Pollution Prevention Coordinator at (410) 537-4119, Laura.Armstrong@maryland.gov, or Mark Petruzzi, Green Seal VP Certification, (410) 349-0404 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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