Green Lodging Program

The California Green Lodging Program was originally developed by the California Integrated Waste Management Board (now known as CalRecycle) to provide travelers a green option for their lodging needs. The program is currently operated by the Department of General Services (DGS) as a part of the State Travel program. State employees are encouraged to explore green lodging options when on state business.

The program’s goals include diverting waste from landfills, conserving energy and water, and improving indoor environmental quality. Whether you travel on state business or you just want to “do the right thing,” the California Green Lodging program provides a Green Lodging Directory of hotels throughout the state.

Green Resources for Travelers

Travelling green has many benefits, including reducing your carbon footprint, diverting waste from landfills, and saving limited resources. As a traveler in California, you have options beyond business as usual. The Department of General Services has information that can help you pick a Certified California Green Lodging Hotel.

Why “Green” Hotels?

  • Average-sized hotels purchase more products in one week than 100 families do in a year. We want at least 50 percent of those purchases to be environmentally preferable products.
  • Waste generation can be as high as 30 pounds per room per day; as much as 80 percent of these materials can be recycled.
  • Hospitality industry spends $3.7 billion a year on energy. Electricity use accounts for 60-70 percent of the utility costs of a typical hotel. We can introduce you to energy-efficient products and practices that will reduce energy consumption, therefore lowering energy costs.
  • Two percent of California’s food waste comes from the hotel and lodging industry (112,000 tons per year). This food waste can be composted and/or donated to charities.
  • Typical hotels use 218 gallons of water per day per occupied room. Water-efficient fixtures can reduce water and sewer bills by 25-30 percent.

Resources for the California Green Lodging Program

For those wishing to find a green hotel or to participate in the program, information is available on DGS’s Green Lodging Website. Additionally, at this website, hotels interested in becoming certified can find information and an application.

For more information contact: Office of Public Affairs,