GreenLine News Update Annual Summary

In 2014, the GreenLine Newsletter transitioned to the GreenLine News Update. Throughout the year, GreenLine provided support to concessioners via articles posted twice a month. These articles are intended to be relevant to concessioner operations by providing environmental updates, answering concessioner questions, and explaining environmental innovations. Here are the highlights from 2014:

Green Hotel Ratings: Sustainability Matters Travelers are increasingly aware of their carbon footprint when they travel, and are seeking sustainable hotels for lodging. Vendors are now launching platforms to help travelers filter potential hotels based on environmental practices. Seek advice from TripAdvisor or Environmentally Friendly Hotels if you’re looking to learn more about eco-conscious lodging options.

Signal Mountain Lodge uses EMS as their Springboard to Environmental Excellence Grand Teton’s Signal Mountain Lodge serves as an excellent example of how an Environmental Management System (EMS) can work to strengthen a park’s sustainability performance.

Storing Flammable or Combustible Liquids Concessioners and parks alike must maintain certain conditions for compliance and safety. A dangerous element in our operations is the storage of flammable or combustible liquids. This article provides helpful advice on the "do's" and "don'ts" of storing dangerous chemicals on site.

Alternative Energy in Concessions As part of its commitment to adaptation and resilience against climate change, the NPS encourages concessioners to seek alternative energy sources, and reduce their reliance on fossil fuels.

Composting 101 Food and beverage operations have different issues to tackle when it comes to sustainability – how to make the food service industry more environmentally friendly. Concessioners across the Service are now switching to biodegradable and compostable service-ware and utensils to cut down on waste sent to landfills.

WaterSense H2otel Challenge Launched in February 2014, the EPA WaterSense H2otel Challenge encourages hotels to utilize water more efficiently.

Cigarette Butt Disposal From eyesores to valuable inputs, cigarette butts are now being up cycled. Researchers have found a way to utilize cigarette butts in oil and chemical production.

Celebrating Earth Day On Earth Day, many parks throughout the Service hosted events and activities for visitors to spread awareness. From sustainable development technology presentations at Aztec Ruins National Monument, to beach cleanup at Delaware North’s Kalalock Lodge in Olympic National Park, concessioners took part in environmental festivities.

GreenChill Concessioners with large, walk-in refrigeration units may be interested to learn more about GreenChill, the EPA Partnership program that aims to reduce refrigerant emissions and reward those food service providers who are functioning more efficiently.

Solar Gardens What do you get when you mix a solar array with a community garden? A solar garden, which connects to the utility grid and allows others to purchase renewable energy credits.

Aliens for Dinner Invasivores – they’re what’s for dinner! There is a new dining fad sweeping the nation: utilizing invasive species in cuisine to reduce harmful invasive effects on ecosystems, and expand our culinary options.

Outside the Box: Unique Recycling and Reuse Practices Find yourself with excess packaging from bulk purchases? The Greenline offers some creative ideas and programs concessioners have developed that encourage reduction and reuse of resources.

New Energy Efficiency Standards for Coolers and Freezers This year the Department of Energy announced two new efficiency standards for coolers and freezers. Concessioners with large food service operations should be aware of these new standards, and what they can do to ensure continued compliance.

Best Practices for Remote Waste Management Managing human waste in the wilderness is a challenge as concessioners bring more visitors to the great outdoors. Odor, visual nuisance, environmental pollution and health hazards must all be considered when advising park guests and instituting new wilderness concession SOPs.

Clean Cities Green Rides Toolkit Transportation is responsible for more than one-fourth of the total greenhouse gas emissions released in the U.S. The DoE Clean Cities Program offers a Green Rides Toolkit to advise concessioners and park officials alike on better fleet management tactics.

Disposable Utensils Going Green Food operations generate plenty of waste from disposal utensils. Parks and concessioners are working together to strategize on how they can reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill.

Environmental Art Ecological art, which utilizes natural materials to create artistic pieces, is experiencing a renaissance throughout the NPS. This “living art” helps to connect the art world with the natural, exposing visitors to a new park perspective.

2013 Environmental Achievement Awards Two concessioners took the spotlight in the 2013 Environmental Achievement Awards: Delaware North at Yellowstone and Forever Resort at Lake Mead. Both displayed acts of environmental awareness to earn them the prize, and set a precedent for other concessioners in the Service.

The Benefits of Vehicle Idle Reduction Transportation affects air quality, water quality, and noise levels of our environment. As more vehicles are used for interpark and intrapark work, policies to utilize fleets more efficiently have brought vehicle idling to the forefront.

An Introduction to the ISO 50001 Standard Plan, Do, Check, Act – the basis of an Environmental Management System. The International Standards Organization (ISO) took the EMS foundation a step further and created ISO 50001, the standard by which efficient energy usage can be certified.

Climate Change Risks Close to Home Scientific studies have proven that climate change effects are being felt within the national parks. Increased drought, flooding and other extreme events are to be expected, and have sparked new conversations on adaptation measures. The Climate Change Response Program and the Climate Friendly Parks Program are working to mitigate these effects while maintaining park integrity.

Aquatic Invasive Species Aquatic invasive species are non-native organisms that cause environmental harm by altering natural habitats. Find out information on how you can stop the spread of these unwanted pests by cleaning and inspecting boats or other outdoor equipment.

The GreenLine exists to support concessioners by providing them with applicable content. We want to ensure that the GreenLine News Update is useful to you, and we’d love to hear your ideas! If you have an article you’d like to see or author yourself, or would like more information on any given environmental or sustainability topic, please submit your thoughts here.