In support of its environmental strategy to address climate change, its global headquarters building in Bethesda, Md., and more than 30 of its hotels in design, development or under construction nationwide are expected to achieve LEED status from the U.S. Green Building Council, Marriott International announced this week.
"LEED certification gives these hotels a 'green' stamp of approval that our customers recognize and look for," Marriott's newly appointed President and Chief Operating Officer Arne Sorenson, co-chair of the company's Executive Green Council, said in a statement. "Saving energy and reducing waste saves money and helps the environment—it's good for business and a key part of our growth strategy."
Marriott was the first major hotel company in the United States with a LEED certified hotel: The Inn and Conference Center by Marriott at the University of Maryland in College Park, Md.
Among the Marriott hotels currently expecting to achieve LEED status are the Fairfield Inn & Suites Baltimore Downtown/Inner Harbor; The Ritz-Carlton Highlands Lake Tahoe in Truckee, Calif.; the Residence Inn Arlington Courthouse in Arlington, Va.; and Courtyard hotels in Chevy Chase, Md., Portland, Ore., and Pittsburgh—all opening later this year—as well as the Renaissance Crystal City Potomac Yards and the Residence Inn Crystal City Potomac Yards in Arlington, Va.; the Atlanta Airport Marriott Gateway; the JW Marriott Hotel Los Angeles; and The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles—all opening in 2010.
Finally, Marriott announced that it plans to pursue LEED-Existing Building status for its global headquarters in Bethesda, Md., by the end of this year. In order to achieve its goal, it plans to divert 64 percent of its total waste—450,000 pounds—from the landfill; shift to biodegradable disposable containers in its cafeteria, and eventually to all permanent-ware; convert used cooking oil to biodiesel fuel; and provide Connect by Hertz cars for employees who use public transportation or who carpool to get to the office.
For more information on Marriott's green initiatives—which are part of its "Spirit To Preserve" campaign, announced last year—visit www.marriott.com/spirittopreserve