Hafa Adai, Sustainability!

In  2018, we gathered information to help finalize a manual of best management practices (BMPs) for hotel design, construction, and operations to improve resiliency in the Northern Mariana Islands. Our staff and partners completed a series of workshops with hotel staff, government agencies representatives, and developers to obtain feedback on the draft manual and proposed BMPs.

Project background – CNMI’s Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality is conducting three sustainability projects to increase resilience. Saipan, which is CNMI’s most populous island, provides accommodations for tourists with approximately 3,200 guest rooms at an 88% occupancy rate. Hotel development will add approximately 5,200 additional rooms in the next few years!  We provided technical guidance along with Brian Rippy, LEED Building Design Expert, Wes Crile Islands Hotel Sustainability expert, and Manny Borja, our boots-on-the-ground engineer in Saipan. The final manual of BMPs will address everything from energy efficiency to rainwater capture potential to closed loop food systems, and more efficient solid waste disposal streams.



CLIENT: Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality Saipan, CNMI

PROBLEM: A booming development industry in CNMI, comprised of largely hotels, where sustainable development principles have not always been implemented. 

SOLUTION: Establish a basic level of sustainable design, operation, and construction criteria that will be required for permitting new hotel construction and major redevelopment/renovation projects.

BENEFITS: Long term sustainability of natural and built environment in CNMI.



Anne Kitchell, LEED AP

associate principal, sr. watershed planner