Voluntary Actions, Not Mandatory Caps Needed for Climate Change Issue

By Steve Kiesner Director of National Accounts, Edison Electric Institute | October 28, 2008

Putting a mandatory cap on the country's CO2 emissions would lead to higher energy bills for you, and it would also most likely put a cap on the economy as a whole, which would slow down your guest traffic as well. While we need to address the climate change issue, McCain/Lieberman and other legislation that imposes mandatory caps on carbon are not the way to do it. There are a variety of other measures, including improving energy efficiency, that can help the country confront the climate issue today. I urge you to tell your senators not to endorse it or any other mandatory climate bills.

The McCain-Lieberman legislation originally came up in 2003. The Senate voted 'no' then. The U.S. House of Representatives has never considered a comparable version of this legislation. Economics are a major reason why.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), here's what could happen if the McCain/Lieberman bill was passed:

Every business, home, and community should be looking for ways to protect the environment. They should also look for ways to reduce the amount of CO2 they are producing. But these kinds of mandatory caps on CO2 are not the way to do it.

Long term, technological solutions on a global scale will be needed to reduce CO2 emissions. But in the short term, voluntary measures such as using energy more efficiently can have an immediate impact. Importantly, taking steps to improve energy efficiency can benefit the bottom-line as well.

For more advice and assistance in becoming more energy efficient, I encourage you to contact the electric utility or utilities that service your company. The electric utility can often be a great resource in helping you take control over your energy use. The power company will likely have historical data about when your hotel uses energy and how your energy use has grown over the years.

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Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.