November 20, 2008
These past few months have been a blur of activity, some of which is due to an effort to cross some items off my Bucket List. A few of these are listed below:
* Drive Cross Country with our Daughter
* Visit the LEED-certified William J. Clinton Presidential Library
* Visit Santa Fe, New Mexico
* Attend a USC football game at The Coliseum
* Attend Eagles concert (my birthday present to myself)
* Hike in Rocky Mountain National Park
* Take a fall walk with my wife in Central Park
* Install dual flush commode in our house
True confession, I have coveted a dual flush for quite some time. Recently, we decided to upgrade one of our bathrooms at home and I obtained approval from the Designer In Charge/General Contractor (my wife) after several debates to proceed.
The final authorization was approved after showing my wife an article in the local paper that our water rates are going up 26%. Additional icing on the cake was a conversation that I had with Yuan Chang of Gaia Hotels. He told me that they put dual flush commodes in The Gaia Anderson and the guests have responded very positively. When was the last time you had a guest comment positively about your toilet?
I am not a proponent of turning hotel guestrooms into science experiments, but I do think allowing the guest to make some greener choices during their stay positively reinforces their opinion of your green ethos.
When I picked up my dual flush I spent some time looking at one of my next Bucket List items – a tankless water heater. Imagine, as much hot water as you need while saving energy and water. That would save buckets of water at our house.
I am interested in learning if other hotels are installing dual flush commodes or high-efficiency toilets using less than 1.6 GPF. Please email me or comment on the blog.
Some other water conservation measures that you may find useful were recently sent to me by Ray Hobbs, senior vice president of Kelco Management & Development. With his permission they appear below:
o Separate meter installed for evaporative uses (irrigation, cooling tower, swimming pool)
o Use of low flow faucet aerators (1.5 gpm or less) in guest bathrooms and public restrooms
o Use of low flow shower heads (2.5 gpm or less) in all guest bathrooms
o Use of low flow toilets (1.6 gpf) in all guest bathrooms and public restrooms
o Linen & Towel reuse program implemented and executed for all guestrooms
o Kitchen does not use running water for defrosting frozen product
o Water towers and chillers have documented PM Program to insure proper operation
o Use of reclaimed water (rain water) for irrigation
o Irrigation system utilizes timer for night time operation with moisture sensor
o Use of xeri-scaping for hotel grounds (reduces water required for irrigation)
o All faucets checked for proper operation in back-of-house areas (no drips!)
o Washing machines and dishwashers are water efficient
o Washing machines and dishwashers operated with full loads
o Ice machines have documented PM Program and monthly inspections
o Housekeeping room attendants trained to report leaking faucets and running toilets
o Laundry associates trained on proper operation of washing machines (full loads)
o Maintenance associates trained on PM Programs for all equipment utilizing water
o Vendors utilized who practice water conservation measures (van wash)
o Vendors utilized who provide hotel with cleaning product that is not toxic to humans or aquatic life, is biodegradable, and will not contribute to ozone depletion