This month, California
is requesting about
200,000 state employees to hold their business meetings at
specially designated “green” hotels.
The California Integrated Waste Management Board in Sacramento
rated 30 properties based on a criteria that included the amount of
trash recycled, energy efficiency rates and the use of ecologically
safe products like biodegradable detergents.
“Our mission is to achieve zero waste,” said Roberta Kunisaki
(right), senior integrated waste management specialist and project
manager for the California Green Lodging Program. “We want to leave
as small a footprint as possible.”
Beginning Sept. 29, state meeting planners can find each
hotel’s report card online at www.ciwmb.ca.gov
. The board also plans to rate
other U.S. properties, including major chains.
The effort “will have a big impact on business,” said Michael
Pace, the general manager of San Francisco’s Hotel Triton and head
of an eco-makeover of San Francisco-based Kimpton Hotels and
Critics of the plan, however point out that booking
ecologically advanced hotels remains merely an option. “Although
I’d use [a green hotel] myself, the government ultimately is going
to be driven by dollars,” said Darlene McKinney, management analyst
of the San Diego-based Department of Veterans Affairs.