The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has changed the rules under which it decides which facilities to use for meetings; it will now include environmental achievement along with such factors as price and past performance when evaluating hotel properties. The agency has come up with a 14-point checklist for planners to use when choosing meeting space. Among them: a recycling program, linen/towel reuse option, policy to turn off lighting and air conditioning when rooms are not in use, energy-efficiency program, water-conservation program, paperless check-in and checkout for guests, and use of recycled or recyclable products. The federal government spends $14 billion a year on travel, $50 million of which is spent by the EPA. EPA officials hope that its decision will eventually lead to a governmentwide shift toward greener meetings. For more, visit