The San Diego Marriott Marquis Hotel and Marina is among more than 60 waterfront businesses participating in the Port of San Diego’s Green Business Challenge. The Challenge is designed to promote practices that reduce energy consumption, water use, minimize waste, as well as prevent pollution. These efforts can all lead to cost savings, something important to all businesses.
One of the missions of the Port of San Diego is to act as an environmental steward. In 2006, an environmental fund was created to pay for projects that go beyond state and federal regulations. Since then, $7.3 million has been allocated for more than 60 projects, 42 of which have been completed.
“The Marriott has had a long history of wanting to be green and we’ve had several initiatives we have done over the years,” said Jerry McHugh, director of engineering for the Marriott.
The hotel has more than 1,300 guest rooms, 75,000 square feet of meeting space and a 446-slip marina.
For the past five years, the Marriott has been undergoing a green renovation, converting all of its mechanical equipment with new electronic devices – including a $5 million elevator and escalator update – to control and save energy.
“Our current corporate goal to reduce utility consumption by two percent but currently we are on track to reduce it by five percent,” said McHugh. “Reducing energy use on the San Diego bayfront helps reduce pollution and meet environmentally friendly standards.”
Since participating in the Green Business Challenge, the Marriott Marquis has been working above and beyond its corporate initiatives. With the help of San Diego Gas and Electric, the hotel successfully installed energy-efficient lighting in its front drive, lobby, pool area, guest rooms, and meeting space. In all, the project has saved the hotel 130,000 kWh per year, equaling about a $16,000 savings over a year.
The hotel is also doing its part to educate employees. McHugh said the hotel meets once a week with its engineering team to discuss energy saving ideas that team members can use at home.
The Port has a partnership with KGTV Channel 10 as part of its Sustain San Diego environmental program. In working with the Port of San Diego, Channel 10 news reporter Phoebe Chongchua is providing reports on milestones from the Green Business Challenge each month.
A complete list of all participants in the Green Business Challenge is available at GreenPortChallenge.org.