Vegas Hotels Ramp Up Sustainability

Steve Wynn reportedly resigned today as CEO of Wynn Resorts amid accusations of sexual misconduct that began circulation in January. 

Major resort brands in Las Vegas including Wynn Resorts, MGM Resorts, and Caesars Entertainment have elevated their sustainability practices and initiatives. 

Wynn Las Vegas

At this year’s Global Meetings Industry Day, Wynn Resorts revealed the latest on its sustainability practices at its Las Vegas property. 

Wynn Las Vegas has implemented a wet-waste single-stream recycling program, a method that collects and sorts food and landscape waste, as well as recyclables such as paper, plastic, and cardboard. The reclaimed materials are repurposed for various commodity streams or used as sustainable food sources for local farm animals. The practice also reclaims items that have been inadvertently discarded, like flatware, dinnerware, glassware, linens and more, keeping them from entering landfills.

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Wynn Resorts also outlined its renewable energy operations. Wynn's information technology infrastructure, housed at Switch’s Core Campus data center in Las Vegas, is powered by 100 percent renewable energy. This means that clients have access to data capabilities in their on-site business centers, and can support hundreds of laptops and thousands of personal phones, with a sustainable energy source. 

Switch retired over 835 geothermal and solar renewable energy credits in 2016, and expects to retire over 850 in 2017, on behalf of Wynn Las Vegas. Independently tracked and verified, each renewable energy credit is proof that one megawatt-hour (MWh) of electricity was generated from an eligible renewable energy resource and delivered to the energy grid, Wynn said. 

Additionally, Wynn Las Vegas reported that it officially began commercial operation of its Wynn Solar Facility on June 2, which the resort says will allow it to offset up to 75 percent of its peak power needs with renewable energy. The new facility will eventually be used to power the resort’s new meetings and conventions space expansion - which is set to open in March 2020 - with 100 percent renewable energy.

Combined with the recently installed solar panels covering 103,000 square feet of Wynn's rooftop, enough renewable energy will be generated to power 5,056 homes and eliminate 33,734 metric tons of CO2 emissions from the environment annually, according to the resort.

MGM Resorts International

MGM Resorts International and Chicago-based renewable energy company, Invenergy, have partnered on a new solar photovoltaic array, which will generate 100 megawatts of clean, renewable energy. The MGM-Invenergy Solar Project will be located 25 miles north of Las Vegas and MGM Resorts will purchase all the energy generated by the project to help power its 13 properties on the Las Vegas strip. The project will be operational by the end of 2020. 

The MGM-Invenergy Solar Project will be made up of approximately 336,000 panels on 640 acres of land within the U.S. Bureau of Land Management's Dry Lake Solar Energy Zone. The project will produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of approximately 27,000 homes. 

MGM Resorts' Las Vegas properties include Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, Circus Circus Las Vegas, the Bellagio, Mirage, Aria, and MGM Grand. By building the array close to the Las Vegas strip, it will enable MGM Resorts to directly use the electricity generated from the array.

In 2016, MGM Resorts completed the expansion of the nation's largest contiguous rooftop solar array. The 26,000 panel, 8.3-megawatt solar array is located on the roof of the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.

MGM Resorts International also announced that single-use straws will only be served upon request at company-operated restaurants in the United States. In addition, both single-use plastic "stir straws" and drinking straws have been removed from casino floors, buffets, cafes, bars, and lounges, though they will still be available to customers upon request.

This plastic straw initiative, which began rolling out in May 2018, aims to eventually remove more than 250,000 straws a day from landfills and waterways, amounting to roughly 100 million straws each year.

Caesars Entertainment Corporation

Caesars Entertainment Corporation, which operates several venues in Las Vegas, has announced it has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the company and throughout its supply chain. Caesars has committed to reduce absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions 30 percent by 2025, and 95 percent by 2050, using 2011 as a base-year. Caesars also committed to have 60 percent of suppliers by spend institute science-based GHG reduction targets for their operations by 2023.

The carbon and management strategy developed by Caesars is a part of the company's CodeGreen environmental program, which was established in 2008. The program entails engaging employees and guests to understand and reduce energy use, GHG emissions, waste and water use. Caesars Entertainment has reduced its total GHG emissions by 22.9 percent since 2011.

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