Water is an absolute necessity for life—and it’s running out. The time to focus on reducing water usage and increasing eco-friendly practices is now. Hotels are realizing this, and they have begun to do their part in reducing water usage as much as possible.
While it’s now common for convention centers to include sustainability initiatives in their operating policies, not all such programs are created equal. Planners in search of an environmentally responsible venue can book these convention centers with a clear eco-conscience.
It’s the last straw for hotels, restaurants and bars across the country. They agree it’s time to stop sucking. Specifically, it’s time to stop sucking on single-use plastic straws.
As America’s downtown districts keep evolving, they offer more options than ever for environmentally friendly meetings. The annual meeting of the American Epilepsy Society (AES) has been held in U.S. cities from coast to coast, but regardless of which destination they choose, the event’s planners tend to keep their business in the downtown district.
The new year is looking brighter. Big event venues such as Mandalay Bay and Palm Springs convention centers have upgraded to green-energy sources, a change that will benefit not just the environment but business, too. According to this year’s SITE report, sustainability and green initiatives have become very important. Ninety-four percent of corporate clients said a top trend that’s having a positive impact on incentive travel is programs that show they are trying to do something positive.
Gone are the days when a collection of recycling bins could pass for a sustainability program. Having long passed the buzzword phase, environmental responsibility concerns now permeate the business landscape, including the meetings and events industry. In the current climate, wastewater reuse and compost bins are merely signs of a venue keeping pace with eco-conscious practices, not setting trends.
On a recent trip to Honolulu, the director of sales at a major Waikiki hotel looked down from an upper-floor patio and remarked to me, wistfully, that the famed beach needs more sand. It’s true. The fringe of sugar-soft powder is narrower than it once was, but what most visitors don’t realize is that Waikiki Beach is man-made. Almost all that sand was imported—from California, China and elsewhere in Hawaii—and erosion and sea rise are washing it away.