By Sonia Isotov
Last Thursday, Governor Neil Abercrombie presented the 7th annual Hawaii Green Business Hotels Awards to seven Hawaii hotels including the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua.
The Ritz-Carlton Kapalua was honored for its efforts in sustainable and environmentally conscience business practices. For example, the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua runs a Jacques Cousteau Ambassadors of the Environment program which teaches guests about natural tide pools, the rainforest, humpback whales and local ecosystems through interactive activities with trained naturalists. The Ritz-Carlton Kapalua also reportedly has estimated an 8.6% reduction in electricity and 10.4% reduction in gas, and an 8.9% reduction in water consumption.
The Green Business Awards Program is a partnership between the State Departments of Health and Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) and the Chamber of Commerce of Hawai‘i. The program works in collaboration with county agencies and the Hawai‘i Hotel and Lodging Association to help businesses comply with environmental regulations, as well as to conserve energy, water and other valuable resources
“Protecting Hawaii’s precious resources and moving toward a sustainable future is a part of everyone’s kuleana,” said Governor Abercrombie, in a prepared statement. “Through proactive and sustainable practices, such as conserving water and electricity, reducing waste and protecting Hawaii’s environment, these businesses are doing their part to ensure that our residents and visitors can continue to enjoy a healthy environment.”
In a statement released by the DBEDT, the Green Hotel Award winners and examples of their energy and water conservation practices, pollution prevention programs, solid waste reduction activities, and recycling efforts instituted on their properties, was outlined:
- Hyatt Regency Waikiki: As an ENERGY STAR labeled hotel, three years in a row and a two time Hawaii Green Business participant, the Hyatt Regency installed an Environmental Management System in 1,229 rooms, 6,000 LED bulbs and fixtures throughout the hotel, they have re-lamped every guest room to CFLs, and have realized a 1,428,325 kWh reduction in electricity use as well as a 4.5 million gallon reduction in water usage. Over the past 5 years, the Hyatt estimates a 20% reduction in their electricity, gas and water usage.
- JW Marriott Ihilani at Ko Olina: With Marriott’s “Spirit to Serve” the community, the JW Marriott Ihilani has implemented green measures such as lighting retrofits and provision of recycling bins in common areas, meeting facilities, outdoors and landscaping, maintenance and operations, kitchen area, and has recycled and kept 62 tons out of the landfill.
- Kahala Hotel & Resort: As their second time participating in the Hawaii Green Business Program, the resort’s air conditioning systems are on an energy management system, and ceiling fans were installed in all guestrooms that can be used as an alternative for A/C. The property also uses deep water wells to cool their chiller system saving the property 380,000 kWh of electricity and 4.5 million gallons of water annually. The CFL retrofit in guestrooms resulted in an estimated reduction of 180,000 kWh per year. With the installation of high efficiency water aerators and fixtures, the Kahala Hotel has estimated a 40-50% reduction in water usage.
- Kilauea Lakeside Estate: Nearly all of this private retreat’s energy (25 kW) is provided by 120 PV panels providing energy for the facility. Most of the lighting is LED, and all of the water heating is provided with solar hot water systems. Also, low-flow toilets and shower heads have also been installed as water conservation methods and 100% of the resulting water usage is addressed with their on-site water catchment system. Steve and Janine Hunt have dedicated 30 years developing this sustainable retreat on Kauai.
- Turtle Bay Resort: Located on the North Shore of Oahu, the Turtle Bay’s green initiatives include: use of locally grown and organic produce, lighting retrofits with nearly 70% of the resort’s lighting converted to CFLs resulting in a 12% reduction in electricity usage, and recycling – with an average increase of 1.8 tons of recycled over the last two years. The property has also converted hundreds of gallons of cooking oil into bio-diesel by partnering with Brigham Young University.
- Wyndham at Waikiki Beach Walk: This recently renovated property replaced and retrofitted all fixtures with incandescent bulbs to compact fluorescents and implemented energy saving occupancy sensors in office and public restrooms. From 2008-2010, the resort has reduced kWh consumption by 5.4%, and reduced gas usage by 6.5%. All guestrooms feature low-flow showerheads, low-flow toilets, and sink aerators to decrease water usage. All reusable hotel items such as furniture, dishes, small appliances, carpeting are donated to local charities and schools.
For more information visit the Green Business Awards Program website.