Convention 2012

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Going Green
Our Commitment to Sustainability

At Gaylord Entertainment, we take great pride in being a leader in the hospitality and meetings industry. We are the only hotel brand focused solely on meetings, delivering flawless experiences to meeting planners and attendees alike. While we are known for our "everything in one place" hotels- the real key to our success is our employees, whom we affectionately call "STARS". Our STARS-first culture is part of a broader, respect-based system of values that is central to Gaylord Entertainment. And our commitment to sustainability-to "doing well by doing good"-is an extension of this system of values.

The Roots of Our Commitment

For many years, we have made great efforts to reduce the impact of our operations on the environment in ways that do not interfere with our ability to deliver the impeccable service that our guests and customers expect from Gaylord Hotels. To solidify our commitment to making environmentally and socially responsible decisions in every area of our business, we created the Office of Sustainability in 2010, and charged the office with integrating sustainability into the overall corporate strategy. From this work, Gaylord Entertainment's corporate sustainability program, GET Green, was born.

"We strongly believe that individuals and businesses alike share the responsibility of protecting the planet and its limited natural resources. And as a leading hospitality and entertainment company serving millions of guests each year, we take this responsibility very seriously. For that reason, we have committed to integrating sustainability into our overall corporate strategy."

-David Kloeppel, President and COO

Our GET Green Mission Statement

We operate in a resource-intensive industry. Through embracing sustainability - business practices built upon three pillars: Planet, People and Profitability (the 3 P's) - we reduce our impact on the environment while improving our interactions with all of our stakeholders. Our commitment to sustainability, to balancing the three P's, extends from the executive suite and board room to each and every STAR who works to make our guests' experiences memorable ones.

Our GET Green Mission Statement serves to guide our actions on a daily basis:

Gaylord Entertainment is committed to taking mindful steps towards minimizing our impact on the environment while providing our guests and customers with flawless service, maintaining a healthy workplace for our STARS, enhancing our interaction with the communities in which we live and work, and increasing shareholder value.

Creating a broad vision for sustainability is relatively easy; achieving success by delivering results against meaningful goals is the real challenge. For that reason, only after completing a detailed analysis of our operations, including our first greenhouse gas inventory and extensive utility studies, did we establish the following environmental focus areas:

    Energy efficiency is our number one priority-it's where our sustainability efforts can have the biggest impact right away. From replacing incandescent light bulbs with LEDs and CFLs to running a natural gas fired cogeneration facility, we are taking major steps to reduce our dependence on energy. And as we reduce our energy consumption, we will simultaneously reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.
    We are making great strides to limit landfill waste through various initiatives, including recycling efforts and donating food and amenities to charitable organizations. Following the mantra "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle," we are in the process of identifying and implementing new waste reduction projects.
    We are taking a number of steps to limit the amount of water used throughout our properties, including installing low-flow plumbing fixtures in our guest rooms and public spaces, improving laundry operations by upgrading machinery and incorporating native plants and advanced watering systems in our interior and exterior landscaped areas. Washing towels represents one of the largest uses of water across our company, and through the efforts of our guests and STARS alike, we are already making great improvements.

GET Green Goals

While waste and water are critical focus areas of GET Green, energy is our number one priority. There is no way around the fact that operating properties like ours in a manner that assures the comfort of all of our guests and STARS is energy-intensive, expensive and responsible for a large majority of our carbon emissions. For this reason, reducing our energy intensity-in our existing hotels and in any future developments-represents the first two GET Green goals in a series of long-term goals

Our first two GET Green goals are:

  • Reducing our consumption of energy and emissions of greenhouse gases per square foot by 20% by 2015
  • Pursuing LEED certification for all new development.

What the Future Holds

While we have embraced sustainable business practices long before the term sustainability gained popularity, our journey is really just beginning. The launch of GET Green signified the renewal of our commitment, and we intend to press forward on this journey for years to come. As we continue to study our operations and track progress, we will announce new long-term waste and water reduction goals and will periodically share details of our progress against those goals.

In order to continually improve our sustainability program, we rely on the experience and expertise of a broad range of industry groups, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and academic partners.

AH&LA Green Task Force read more

In response to the growing industry concern around environmental best practices, America Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) formed the Engineering and Environment Committee and the Green Task Force, both comprised of the top sustainability and corporate social responsibility officers from the major hotel brands across the country.

Conservation International read more

Conservation International (CI) is a leading non-governmental organization dedicated to empowering societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature, global biodiversity and the well-being of humanity. Gaylord Entertainment is a member of CI's Business & Sustainability Council, a community of companies committed to leveraging their business experience and resources to protect nature for the benefit of humanity.

U.S. Green Building Council read more

Through its Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) encourages global adoption of green building and development practices through a rating system for site development, water efficiency, energy efficiency and emissions reduction, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. As a national and local member of the USGBC, Gaylord Entertainment has committed to pursuing LEED Silver Certification for all new projects


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