Hotel Online  Special Report

 The Fairmont Washington, D.C. Buying 6% of its
Power Needs from a West Virginia Wind Farm
Newest Environmental Initiative Recognized with Green Power
Partnership Designation

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 28, 2003) - The Fairmont Washington, D.C., in partnership with Washington Gas Energy Services, has agreed to purchase six percent of its annual electrical power needs from a truly renewable energy source, wind.  With this commitment, The Fairmont Washington, D.C. is the first hotel in the mid-Atlantic region to receive the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Green Power Partnership designation.  More importantly to the planet’s fragile environment, the hotel’s use of wind power will save approximately 828,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from being released into the air, which is the equivalent of removing 72 cars from the road or planting 112 acres of trees, according to the EPA.  West Virginia’s new Mountaineer Wind Energy Center will harness nature’s unlimited wind supply, providing the hotel a portion of the energy needed to fuel its electrical needs.

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has a long history of environmental stewardship.  The company-wide, award-winning Green Partnership Program is designed to reduce the impact of hotel operations on the environment. Originally pioneered by Fairmont’s Canadian portfolio in 1990, today with the support of Fairmont’s 23,000 colleagues, the Green Partnership program is expanding throughout Fairmont’s growing portfolio of United States hotels in 2003. 

“Whether in Canada, Mexico, Bermuda or the United States, our colleagues continue to tell us that they want to do their part,” says Lyle Thompson, manager of environmental affairs for Fairmont Hotels & Resorts. “We are happy to support the hotels with the tools they need to truly make a difference.” 

Fairmont’s Green Partnership program has been endorsed by various environmental groups, including Monte Hummel, President of World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Canada. “WWF welcomes the Green Partnership program of Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, through which a major international company is shouldering its responsibility for the world we leave behind.  It’s all part of being a good ancestor,” explains Mr. Hummel. 

The Fairmont Washington, D.C., part of the portfolio since December 2002, has fully embraced this commitment to sustainability, which extends beyond the agreement to use wind power.  The hotel’s colleagues have created an Environmental Committee, developing a number of programs incorporating the environmental mantra, reduce, reuse and recycle, into the hotel’s daily operating practices.  A brief sampling of these initiatives includes:

  • The installation of a hydrocarbon-powered dry cleaning machine, replacing the toxic chemical Perc with Rynex, an environmentally friendly product that does not produce toxic wastes or hazards;
  • Recycling white paper in the heart of the house and purchasing copy paper made with a high percentage of recycled material;
  • Recycling aluminum cans, newspaper, cardboard and glass in all guestrooms and through banquets;
  • Installing low-flow showerheads and toilets in guest room baths and public restrooms;
  • Encouraging colleagues to use public transportation by offering MetroCheck, a program enabling hotel staff to purchase monthly MetroRail, MarcTrain and VRE passes with pre-tax dollars.
Additionally, the hotel has donated nearly one ton of recycled bath amenities and gently used bed linens to local non-profit organizations such as Keys for the Homeless and the Central Union Mission.

Located in Washington's West End the 415 room Fairmont Washington, D.C. offers a wealth of facilities while maintaining an air of tranquility insured through the design of intimate spaces, plenty of natural daylight, and a cascade of plants both inside and out.


Lori Holland
Director of Public Relations
Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

Lyle Thompson 
Manager, Environmental Affairs
Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

Also See: Bucuti Beach Resort, Aruba and Sandals Negril Beach Resort, Jamaica Awarded for Environmental Management / July 2003
MountainStar Resort, With Three Golf Courses, 150-room Lodge & Conference Center, Will Forever Change Two Rural Washington Communities / August 2003
Caribbean Alliance for Sustainable Tourism Appoints Deirdre Shurland Director; Seeks to Re-energize Environmental Programs / April 2003

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