Green Operations Management…
Rangers Lead the Way
How can I make a difference?
And where do I begin?
By Art Attaway
With the Here are some specific areas where any service and results. Enzyme cleaners
seemingly operator can make a swift and valuable don’t kill the mold, mildew, and dirt, they
d a u n t i n g change on the operations level, set the attack (consume) the bacteria that mold,
task of con- standard, and even save operational cost mildew, and dirt need to live, so without
verting to and be the sung hero, at least for the day the presence of that bacteria, then they
Green, and when the next P&L comes out. simply cannot survive, and they disap-
Eliminate VOC’s (volatile organic com-
pounds) in all products and services used These cleaning products include house-
in the daily operation of the property. keeping, carpet maintenance, steward-
b u i l d i n g
VOC’s are present in most chemical com- ing, and laundry,
s y s t e m s
pounds and you probably use them every
and capital equipment being left up to
Whether a product is “green” or not is
day, at home as well as in the hotel/motel,
the building owners and management
measured by the volume of VOC’s that
and do not even realize it. Most products
companies, you may ask “How can I as
outgas from it when used. Ask your
developed from the 1950’s to present,
an operations person even make a differ-
supplier for MSDS that show the VOC
aside from the research and development
level. In fact, just tell your supplier you
of the Green movement, are laden with
want green products and put the burden
Well, the answer to this is you can make chemicals that outgas after their use, and
of finding the right ones on them. When
the most “immediate” difference, because many do so for years. In fact, these are
users demand the products the suppliers
what you can do does not cost additional the primary cause of “Indoor Air Pollution”
money, will probably save money, and will and are the greenhouse gases of your
impact the indoor environment of your building. The Federal government pro-
Adhesives: If you do any of your own
property that day. It is sort of like voting, duced a study almost a decade ago that
repair work, change the carpets or vinyl
and the old adage that “every vote counts” demonstrated that indoor air pollution was
flooring, fix the trim, etc., address the ad-
and “one person can make a difference” more of a problem than outdoor pollution.
hesives you use and insure they are low
does apply. If you are doing it, then the Thus the ban on cigarettes, which also
“VOC”. If you change carpet, buy carpet
housekeeper will, the stewards will…all outgas and permeate the area. And the
and padding and adhesives that are low
management will join in. And the Ranger “requirement” that all government build-
VOC. They are out there.
is the one out there, searching, recon- ings test and maintain a certain level of
Fabric protectors: Scotchguard recently
ing, and gathering useful and actionable indoor air quality.
revamped their formula to reduce emis-
intelligence and most often alone and
So, where do these enemy VOC’s hide?
sions. There are other products available
far away from the safety of the group. In
as well, and research will provide several
the modern day military, it is simply said,
Cleaning products: almost all cleaning
“Rangers Lead the Way”...they are on the
products of the recent past are loaded
cutting edge of the battle.
with chemicals that outgas, and are harm-
Stain removers: Almost all are bad.
ful for the user, but also linger in the area
Again, look for a cure from your local sup-
So lies the challenge for you to “lead the
and affect everyone around. There are a
pliers, or online.
way” in your property. Be the Ranger.
number of green products now available;
Paints: This one is easy; just look for
You will have the honor of being the un-
everything from enzyme cleaners to other
alternate paint products for your ongoing
sung hero of the day, but you will know.
organic compounds that offer the same
touch-up. Any paint can be pigmented to
And, you will make a difference.
match an existing color.
PAGE 16 | Fall 2009 | Lodging Engineer
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