Some hotels try to save and be sustainable by not replacing towels unless requested, but the move is more than environmentalism or good public relations. Hotels that book conferences and other meetings can take business from competitors based on their sustainability. "Companies like IBM and other big companies, they give us a whole survey that might be two, three, four pages long saying not just do you recycle, what do you recycle," says MGM Resorts sustainability chief Cindy Ortega.

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