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The Last Straw: Marriott International makes a move to reduce its environmental impact

July 20, 2018

By Lexi Wilkinson

As the conversation around sustainability and environmental awareness grows larger, the spotlight has been focused on something small: plastic straws. Many of us use straws on a daily basis – whether it’s a soda from a fast food restaurant or a stirrer in our coffee – without even thinking about it. But the danger is looming; millions and millions of straws end up in our oceans every single day. Marriott International is doing something about it.

The largest hotel company in the world with 30 brands under its belt, Marriott International announced on July 18, 2018, that by next July, they will completely eliminate single-use plastic straws from their 6,500 properties worldwide. This action could effectively remove more than 1 billion straws from ending up in our oceans.

“We are proud to be among the first large U.S. companies to announce that we’re eliminating plastic straws in our properties worldwide,” said Arne Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, in a written statement on the company’s website. “Removing plastic straws is one of the simplest ways our guests can contribute to plastic reduction when staying with us – something they are increasingly concerned about and are already doing in their own homes. We are committed to operating responsibly and – with over one million guests staying with us every night – we think this is a powerful step forward to reducing our reliance on plastics.”

The move comes as the hospitality industry as a whole makes a concerted effort to reduce its environmental impact. Other brands like Hyatt, Hilton, AccorHotels, and Four Seasons have all made progress in eliminating plastic straws and providing environmentally-friendly, biodegradable options instead.

For more information about why plastic straws are bad for the environment, check out www.strawlessocean.org.

To read Marriott International’s full statement, click here.

About the author

Joe Clote

Joseph W. Clote is owner of Publishing Concepts, LLC a communications and marketing firm based in Saint Louis, Missouri. Mr. Clote is Group Publisher of MeetMed™ and Missouri Meetings & Events™ (MM&E) magazine, a quarterly publication read by thousands of meeting and event professionals, and producer of the St. Louis and Kansas City trade shows under the MM&E name. Mr. Clote has extensive sales and marketing expertise in the travel, tourism, fine art, insurance, and software development industries.