Local Lodging Industry To Dramatically Decrease Water Consumption by Participating in EPA’s WaterSense H2Otel Challenge Initiative
Tampa, FL (June 23, 2015) … The Hillsborough County Hotel Motel Association (HCHMA) has launched its most ambitious water conservation effort to date through its partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The goal of cutting water consumption within the local lodging industry by 5 million gallons by 2016 is a voluntary effort that will primarily be accomplished through hotel operational changes that will be implemented without impacting the hotel guest experience.
Participation in this program is free but hotel operators are required to register at http://www.epa.gov/watersense/commercial/challenge_pledge.html to effectively ACT (Assess water usage and saving opportunities, Change products or processes to incorporate best management practices and Track results using ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager or another tracking tool).
Large hotels that are served by cooling towers used to treat warm water generated by the chiller condenser found in central air conditioning systems can dramatically decrease water and energy consumption by retrofitting those towers to make them operate more efficiently. Cooling towers can represent up to 25 percent of a hotel’s total water use.
“We have a unique opportunity to have our larger hotels lead the way in this effort,” said Bob Morrison, HCHMA executive director. “With the help of one of our allied members, the Clearwater-based Terlyn Industries, hotels will be able to modify existing building cooling systems in such a way that those properties will see significant improvements in water consumption efficiencies.”
According to a case study of the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, water use in the hotel’s cooling towers, water-cooled equipment and chiller and boiler systems was reduced by 35 percent in 2013. Maximizing its mechanical system enabled the 1.5 million square foot, 1,260-room hotel to lower its water demand and realize a cost savings of $1 million per year in water and sewer fees (http://www.epa.gov/watersense/docs/ci_casestudy_hyattregencyatlanta_508.pdf).
Tampa Bay hoteliers are encouraged to sign up for a complimentary cooling tower water conservation study offered by Terlyn Industries, a local business that specializes in industrial water treatment. For more information, go to http://www.terlyn.com/.
The WaterSense H2O Challenge marks the second water conservation partnership program that HCHMA members have voluntarily adopted to conserve water. The Water Conservation Hotel and Motel Program, or Water CHAMP effort that was previously implemented, was created by a partnership with the Southwest Florida Water Management District, the City of Tampa and Hillsborough County. That initiative focused on towel and linen reuse programs and retrofitting of toilets and faucets designed to increase water-related efficiencies in local hotels.
The Hillsborough County Hotel Motel Association (http://www.hchma.com/) is a membership-based organization that represents leading hotels, motels and resorts. First organized in 1937, HCHMA’s membership include owners and managers of hotels, motels and resorts, attractions and venues that are beneficiaries of the Tourist Development Tax allocated within Hillsborough County and businesses that provide products and services to the hospitality industry.