Occtober 30, 2018
Boston Green Tourism
...advancing the green hotel movement

Dear Boston Green Tourism Members, 

The presentations from the October 11 meeting at The Langham, Boston  are linked and  summarized below. See the other sections, too.

Our next meeting will be December 6 at Sheraton Boston.

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Boston Green Tourism Meeting

October 11, 2018
Location : The Langham, Boston
Hosts:  Joe Riordan, Debbie Freckleton
Present Debbie Freckleton, Joe Riordan, Cameron Ritzenthaler, Karen Weber, Dan Cook, Oliver Sheridan, Brad Jones, PJ Deschenes, Mike Delano, Dan Ruben. 

Joe Riordan, Director of Engineering at The Langham, Boston
Debbie Freckleton, Director of Quality, Learning, and Development at The Langham Boston
The Langham Boston's environmental program is so rich and creative that I can't properly summarize it here. I encourage you to read the presentation. 
Here are a few of the hotel's programs, practices and products that are particularly interesting.
  • Oyster shell recycling: The Langham, Boston is a participant in the Massachusetts Oyster Projectwhich restores MA oyster beds. Oyster beds provide aquatic habitat and reduce coastal erosion.
  • Bathroom Recycling: The hotel sends its leftover amenity bottles to the Boston Rescue Mission, and its guestroom soap goes to Clean the World.
  • Plastic Waste Reduction: The entire Langham Hospitality Group is phasing out single-use plastics like straws, stirrers, plastic bags, takeaway containers, coffee lids and bottled water at meetings. They're researching the Vivreau water bottling system to replace much of their bottled water with an elegant alternative.
  • Renewable Energy: The hotel buys REC's (renewable energy certificates) to cover its entire electricity use!
  • Ware Washing: The hotel has an Ecolab Apex warewashing system that monitors and reduces water and chemical use.
  • Laundry: The Langham, Boston has a Xeros polymer bead washing machine that  minimizes water, energy and cleaning chemicals.
  • Pool Chemicals: The hotel uses the Paramount Ultra UV System to sanitize their swimming pool. It enables them to sharply reduce chlorine use and improve pool aesthetics. 
  • Food: The hotel's chefs serve as much food grown and harvested within 200 miles as possible. Meatless Mondays are observed in the employee cafeteria.
  • Hyper Local Greens: The kitchen staff grows microgreens and herbs in their indoor Urban Cultivator garden.
  • Community Initiatives: The Langham, Boston supports the Charles River Cleanup, the Coastal Cleanup, Rosie's Place, the Salvation Army and Community Servings with volunteer support, donations of used goods, by hosting fundraisers and more.

Mike Delano, Service Sales, Account Representative, Automated Building Systems, Inc.
Mr. Delano discussed the advantages of converting from pneumatic HVAC controls to a Building Automation System (BAS); and to keep BAS's updated. BAS's use Direct Digital Controls (DDC).
Pneumatic controls are outdated, have fewer capabilities and are prone to leak. Fewer and fewer technicians can service them.
Hotels with well-maintained BAS's can more precisely control their HVAC system and lighting, keep their spaces comfortable, reduce energy use and identify problems. BAS's are continually improving.
BAS's function best when valves, sensors and actuators are replaced when they fail or become outdated; software updates are made as they become available; good preventive maintenance programs are in place; alarms are used; and energy use is carefully monitored.
BAS's enable prompt problem identification. They can provide alarms and reports via email and smartphone. Their graphic displays, including 3D floor plans, help facility managers identify the source and location of building problems.

PJ Qvarnstrom, District Sales Manager ME, NH, RI, MA, Belimo Aircontrols, Inc.  
Low Delta T for a chilled water system is defined by a less than optimal difference between the temperature of the chilled water supply from the coil and the returning chilled water. It indicates that there are one or more problems with the process of cooling the building efficiently. These problems cause too much water to be pumped and extra chillers to come on line--which wastes energy.
Belimo pressure-independent valves use temperature sensors and analytic technology to reduce over-pumping and chiller system operating hours, thereby saving energy, reducing maintenance costs and extending equipment life.
Belimo produces valuable performance reports with helpful graphics that help facility managers identify chiller system problems and trends. They also offer online support.

See this two-minute video.

Dan Ruben, Director, Boston Green Tourism
Waste reduction means reducing the purchase of unnecessary goods. Thoughtful waste reduction initiatives cut purchasing costs, decrease the time needed to move goods around the building, release storage space and slash waste disposal costs. They also reduce the fossil fuel used to make and transport goods; and the amount of waste that ends up in landfills or incinerators.
Businesses that address food waste have cut their food purchasing costs by 2% to 5%, and food waste disposal by 50%. The presentation lists ways to reduce food waste associated with menus, buffets and events; and some helpful resources.
It also shows how to reduce the purchase of restaurant supplies, amenities, paper in the bathroom, mattresses, carpet and more.


U.N. IPCC Report: A Wakeup Call
The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a stark report on October 8, which warns of dire consequences if the world's average temperature ries more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The global temperature has already increased by 1 degree C.
The IPCC is the world's leading scientific body that assesses climate change, its impacts and how to address it.
It says that the pledges made by world governments aren't nearly sufficient to keep the world from blowing past the 1.5 C mark. The consequences of exceeding 1.5 C: more damaging weather (heat waves, storms), faster sea level rise, greater damage to agriculture, reduced water supplies, population displacement, more conflicts and profound ecosystem change.
The IPCC report explains that if temperatures rise beyond 2.0 C, "the world will be a starkly different place. There will be no coral reefs left in the ocean ...and we will face a massive extinction of plants and animals...We will also face serious societal threats to our...economic and social ways of life, such as lower crop yields, and mass migration as sea levels rise."
The major difference between this IPCC report and previous ones is that scientists now project that some of the consequences previously associated with a 2.0 C rise will be felt when we pass 1.5 C.
The authors said that it's physically possible to limit warming to 1.5 C, but it would take an unprecedented effort. We would need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% by 2030, and 100% by 2050. We would also need to expand forests and improve soil, so that more carbon will be taken out of the atmosphere.
What does this report mean for the hospitality sector, including Boston hotels? I'll hazard a guess, knowing that politics and timing are impossible to predict. First, as more climate impacts are felt and recognized, the pressures and incentives to cut fossil fuel use will grow from every direction--government, customers and the chains.
Measures to fortify the Boston area from flooding are already underway (per the article below), and will include a call for the business community to pitch in. 

Building owners will take more assertive measures to protect their properties from flooding and prepare for weather emergencies.  Also, green technology will improve faster and be deployed sooner than anticipated, which will help hotels meet their environmental goals.

Mayor Walsh Releases Plan to Protect Boston's Waterfront
On October 17, Mayor Walsh released "Resilient Boston Harbor," which is the city's plan to add protection from flooding linked to sea level rise and powerful storms. It will also improve waterfront access and add open space. 
Much of the plan addresses the flood pathways associated with the greatest damage potential. It calls for adding seawalls, waterfront parks and other natural buffers; and elevating vulnerable roads by as much as seven feet.
A summary of the project is listed on this page of the City's website. Detailed reports for East Boston, South Boston and Charlestown are on the Climate Ready Boston website.
The project's cost wasn't announced, but it's expected to approach $4 billion. The South Boston plan alone will cost close to $1 billion. The mayor has pledged about $16 million per year, or about 10% of the City's capital budget, for climate resiliency. He will seek funding from the MA and federal governments, foundations and the business community. 

Some civic leaders believe that business contributions will eventually be mandated. However, the funding plan hasn't been established.


Glenn Hasek, Green Lodging News, October 11

Leather upholstery is environmentally-friendly when it's made from repurposed leather, no harmful chemicals are used in the tanning process and it's durable. It shouldn't off-gas much, if at all.

The two green certifications for leather are GREENGUARD and the LEATHER STANDARD by OEKO-TEX. 

The article describes the green attributes of many leather manufacturers.


The following meeting will be 2:30 to 4:00. 

December 6
Sheraton Boston

Boston Green Tourism
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