Greener signs

You may have noticed new signs going up on the sides of the Holiday Inn in downtown Duluth. They’re green both literally and figuratively.

Nationwide, Holiday Inn is replacing incandescent- and neon-lit signs with with new ones using more energy efficient LED lights. In all, about 9,300 signs are being replaced, and the hotel chain expects its energy use for the signs to drop 52 percent as a result.

"There’s a bigger cost up front for these signs, but it’s the right thing to do," said Lisa Augustine, general manager of the Duluth Holiday Inn.

Augustine said the hotel has been stepping up efforts to become more earth-friendly. That means looking at ways to trim energy use throughout, composting and increased recycling efforts. For instance, Augustine said the hotel now sends its old matresses to Goodwill, where they’re deconstructed, allowing many of the bedding components to be reclaimed.

As they say: every little bit helps.