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Newsletter

BEP Reporter
EPA Region 9 Hospitality


P2Rx™ Announces the National Sustainable Lodging Network,

An Online Community for Hospitality Practitioners

NATIONAL – The Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange (P2Rx™) announces the launch of the “National Sustainable Lodging Network,” an online community of sustainable hospitality practitioners and an information clearinghouse to support the work of this community, found online at www.SustainableLodging.org.  Public interest in “going green,” personal ethic, and market demand have led to a growing community of practice in the sustainable hospitality area.  As a result, there has been an explosion of state and local sustainable hospitality programs in recent years and a proliferation of information on how to “green-up” hospitality operations.

Wendi Shafir, Green Lodging and Hospitality Lead for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 9 notes, “The hospitality industry has a large environmental footprint in terms of resources including energy, water, and materials.  Many hotels and chains have successfully reduced their energy and water consumption through a variety of initiatives such as installing energy-efficient lighting, switching to an ozone laundry system, composting and recycling, and at the same time improved their hotel’s bottom line.  The National Sustainable Lodging Network offers an opportunity to share successes and best practices with others in the industry who embrace similar goals.”

P2Rx created the National Sustainable Lodging Network in order to facilitate information sharing amongst the private and public sectors.  SustainableLodging.org brings lodging operations together with federal, state, local, and tribal sustainable hospitality programs, including environmental agencies, tourism boards, and lodging associations.  The goals for the site are to provide forums for sustainable hospitality practitioners to share information on practices and challenges; elevate sustainable hospitality programs and the facilities that participate in them; increase the adoption of sustainable hospitality practices nationwide; and foster innovation in sustainable lodging through the exchange of ideas.

The National Sustainable Lodging Network benefits its users by helping them to build networks among sustainable hospitality practitioners; gain access to and share content related to sustainable lodging initiatives; and find tools and information resources for measuring the outcomes of these practices.  Some of the features of the Network include:

  • Groups  of sustainable hospitality programs and Discussion Forums within each group for programs and facilities to interact;
  • A Calendar of Events for relevant conferences, workshops and webinars;
  • Links to Training Materials and Recent Publications related to sustainable hospitality;
  • Blogs, Videos, and News to keep the community active and the content relevant; and
  • A section on Sustainable Practices that highlights P2Rx information resources such as Topic Hubs™, best practices, P2 opportunities, and case studies.

Michelle Veasey, Manager of the New Hampshire Sustainable Lodging & Restaurant Program, sees value in the networking aspect of the site.  “Our membership finds networking to be a critical piece of their sustainability efforts.  Networking helps them to develop new ideas for advancing their efforts and keeps their programs fresh,” said Veasey.  “In the past, members were limited to only having these kinds of interactions at events.  The National Sustainable Lodging Network allows them to discuss issues, collectively solve problems, and learn from each other – each and every day.  The Network is a valuable tool in moving sustainability forward because it allows people to connect with their peers in real-time and benefit from the variety of experiences of those in the Network.”

The National Sustainable Lodging Network is currently housed on the Ning platform and is supported by the P2Rx Regional Centers.  The P2Rx Centers, with NEWMOA acting as the site administrator, will continue to grow and nurture the site and look for opportunities to incorporate new information and features and other elements of sustainable hospitality.

The National Sustainable Lodging Network can be found at: www.sustainablelodging.org.  An online video tutorial, frequently asked questions, and downloadable user guide are available at: www.sustainablelodging.org/forum/topics/introduction-to-the-national.