January 28, 2016

Dear Boston Green Tourism Members,

The presentations from the January 14 meeting are linked and summarized below. See the other sections, too.

Our next meeting will be Thursday March 10 at the Millennium Bostonian Hotel. 


Boston Green Tourism Meeting
January 14, 2016
Location: Sheraton Commander
HostsAl Vaughn, Michael Gulesarian
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Present: Al Vaughn, Tom Taylor, Tedd Saunders, Samantha Sorrin, Fabienne Eliacin, Gary Robinson, Matt Fagan, Kevin Lubinger, Brian Rossman, Joel Dashnaw, Alex Alexandrovich, Pamela St. Aimee, Adam Mitchell, Bill Scherer, Steve Hayes, Stephen Lafaille, Dale Desmarais, Jake Carr, Dan Ruben. 


Steve Hayes, Founder, Kleen Sky Distribution
Bill Scherer, President, Clean Green Solutions
Hydroxyl radicals are naturally ubiquitous chemicals that prevent the buildup of substances in the atmosphere. Businesses use hydroxyl generators to remediate smoke (cigarettes, fire, etc.), VOC's, other odors, mold and mildew. Compared to ozone, they have more uses and they don't degrade materials like leather and synthetics. Also, hydroxyls are perfectly safe, while ozone is carcinogenic and requires precautionary measures.
Hydroxyl generators are brought in to address one-time problems; and they are also permanently installed in areas that have recurrent odor problems like exercise rooms, pools and food prep areas. Hydroxyl generators can be rented or purchased. Some businesses rent them first to try them out before purchasing them.
The presentation includes case studies and prices.

Stephen Lafaille, Product Manager, Ilios Dynamics
Typically, combined heat and power (CHP) refers to electrical CHP, in which organizations generate some of their own electricity and capture the waste heat to heat their water. Mr. Lafaille discussed a different kind of CHP--mechanical CHP, in which the prime mover instead of turning a generator to create electricity, turns a shaft to produce mechanical work, such as compressing air ("air compressor") or driving a refrigeration cycle ("chiller"  or "heat pump water heater"), and the resulting waste heat is recovered and purposefully reused.
His example: the Ilios water-source natural gas engine driven heat pump water heater, which makes both hot and chilled water simultaneously. It works best in large buildings with chilled water and boiler loops. 

This machine has an attractive ROI, because it reduces electricity, natural gas and water use; and it qualifies for National Grid incentives and the federal Investment Tax Credit. It has other advantages, too: it builds redundancy for hotel hot and chilled water systems, and it extends equipment life by reducing boiler and chiller run times. 

I encourage you to both see the presentation above and this video.
Mechanical CHP, unlike electrical CHP, doesn't interface with the electricity grid. So building owners don't need utility company approval to install it.

What Works Best? Where Are We Headed?      
Adam Mitchell, Partner, Save That Stuff
The MA food waste ban took effect in October 2014 for organizations that generate one ton or more of food waste in a week. MA inspectors have started to issue enforcement warnings to violators. It's expected that they will start levying fines this year.
Hotels that have their food waste hauled to compost facilities do best when their staff is well-trained and they have a good system for cleaning their containers. Haulers like Save That Stuff help with staff training--just ask them.
The new law has resulted in business growth for companies that: process food waste on-site, compost it off-site, make food waste into animal feed and generate energy from food waste. The resulting competition for food waste is likely to keep disposal costs in check.
Save That Stuff is opening a food waste processing plant in Charlestown in 2016. It will benefit the Greater Boston food waste industry by providing cleaner, sorted food waste to end users. 

Sheraton Boston Lights the Homes of Families Moving Out of Shelters    
Sheraton Boston's Jeff Hanulec organized the donation of 700 desk lamps (pictured) to The Wish Project, a Lowell furniture bank. By doing so, the Sheraton reduced its disposal cost, qualified for a tax deduction and kept goods out of the waste stream. They also helped families reestablish themselves.
The Wish Project furnishes 800 to 1,000 apartments yearly for families moving from Lowell homeless shelters to their own apartments. These families often have nothing but the one trash bag of belongings they were allowed to bring to the shelter. Many now will benefit by having the Sheraton's desk lamps.
The Wish Project accepts many kinds of household goods. They treasure beds and dressers most, because these are, by far, the most expensive and hard to find items.
According to The Wish Project executive director, Donna Hunnewell, "a queen mattress set goes for $1,000-$6,000 each, which is a big portion of the total moving expense the family is given." Hotel mattresses are a great solution because they tend to be newer and much higher quality than homeowners' mattresses. Several hotels, including Crowne Plaza Newton, have donated their mattresses recently.
I recommend Donna Hunnewell's presentation about how hotels can benefit from donating to The Wish Project. 

Midtown Hotel Eliminates Hot Water for Laundry
The Midtown Hotel purchased a Xeros bead-cleaning laundry machine to clean its towels. The machine enables the hotel to eliminate its use of hot water in the laundry, and reduce its water use by 79%--saving over $17,000 per year in utility costs. The machine also enables The Midtown to minimize its use of laundry chemicals.
The Midtown's purchase qualified for an incentive payment from National Grid.
LTC Worldwide, which conducts testing for the laundry industry, studied Xeros machines and found that they remove stains well. They also extend linen life because they reduce damage caused by laundry chemicals.
The Xeros 2014 presentation to BGT is here

WaterSense Webinar Series            
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EPA WaterSense and ENERGY STAR will host a new webinar series on water and energy efficiency for commercial facilities. 

You may register for any or all of these sessions.

[This session will be posted on the WaterSense website at a later date.]

Attendees will learn about operations and maintenance tips, retrofit options, and replacements that can reduce water and energy use in bathrooms and commercial laundries.
Learn how to design and maintain landscapes and irrigation systems to reduce outdoor water use. EPA will also discuss pool management: how to reduce water loss from evaporation, filter cleaning, mineral buildup, leaks and splashing.
The speakers will show how facilities reduce water waste in cooling towers and steam boilers, optimize chilled water systems, and address equipment that uses single-pass cooling water.
An Energy Treasure Hunt is a fun process for identifying energy savings and strengthen energy management practices. Energy Treasure Hunts engage building owners, managers and employees in identifying improvements that can be made immediately and inexpensively. This webinar will teach attendees how to assemble a treasure hunt team, prepare for the hunt, and identify the savings.
The speakers will discuss energy and water efficient commercial kitchen equipment, including dishwashers, ice machines, pre-rinse spray valves, and steam cooking equipment. Attendees will hear about best operations and maintenance practices, retrofit options, and replacement options for each equipment type.

Webinars: Hotel Carbon Footprinting Tool
The Hotel Footprinting Tool helps hoteliers, corporations and meeting planners access the greenhouse gas footprint of thousands of hotels worldwide. It uses data from the annual Cornell Hotel Sustainability Benchmarking Study. 

The tool enables meeting planners to report on the carbon footprint of their meetings, and corporate responsibility managers to report on or offset their business travel emissions. 

If you want to learn more about the tool, register for a session and select your preferred date: Feb. 2 (5:00 a.m. to 6;00 a.m.) or February 12 (12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.).

Food Recovery Challenge Webinar: 
Innovative Collaborations in the Hospitality Sector to Increase Food Recovery
Three hospitality sector speakers will share their insights on successful collaborations and approaches to sustainable food management and food recovery for donation. The webinar will take place on February 25, 1:00 - 2:30. Register here

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EV charging stations are fixed in place, which could be a limitation. For example, a hotel's charging stations could be occupied by cars that are fully charged, but the owners haven't retrieved them. New guests who want to charge their cars would then be out-of-luck.

A start-up called Freewire Technologies has a solution--a mobile battery pack called a Mobi that can charge cars wherever they park. At $25,000, it's a pricey solution. 

However, I'll note that Mobi's have other advantages. They help hotels that need more charging stations, but can't install them immediately; and they enable hotels to charge employees' cars without tying up their fixed stations.

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

March 10Millennium Bostonian Hotel
April 28

May 26

June 30
The Langham, Boston

September 8

October 13

December 1 
Seaport Hotel

See you March 10 at the Millennium Bostonian!