Green America: Growing the Green Economy for People and the Planet

Maple Hill Farm Inn and Conference Center
Hallowell, ME

Maple Hill Farm practiced being green before anybody used the term “green.” We have always been committed to protect Maine’s beautiful environment (which is why our guests come to stay with us) and to tread as lightly on the earth as we can. We have always used local and Maine-made products, minimized our use of harmful chemicals, reduced our solid waste, and shared our commitment to sustainability with all our guests. Our commitment to green practices has long been recognized: we were certified as Maine’s First “Environmental Leader” Green Lodging in 2005, a program of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection; we were the recipient of the Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence in 2004; we have been a Certified TripAdvisor GreenLeaders Platinum Level accommodation since 2013; and we were named the “Best Green B&B” in New England by Yankee Magazine in 2011.

More specifically, we have taken these steps to live up to the honors given to us and the trust our guests have in us: We reduce our energy consumption whenever possible. We reduce energy use and replace energy from non-renewable sources while still providing our guests with the comfort and service they expect. Before green practices were even well known, in 2003 we installed a 10-kilowatt wind turbine to generate non-polluting energy to offset power use from the “grid.” In 2006, we installed the largest solar energy array in Maine (at the time) that generates up to an additional 15 kilowatts of electricity. It also heats most of the hot water used at the inn from a solar thermal array and replaces some fuel oil previously used to heat both physical space and water.  We also save additional energy through individual room controls for heat and air conditioning; thus our guests can select their level of comfort, while unoccupied spaces are more modestly tempered.  

Maple Hill Farm Inn has switched over almost all lighting to LED lighting, which is extremely efficient, very long lasting, and mercury-free (unlike any fluorescent lighting, including compact fluorescent bulbs). We do all laundry on the property using high-efficiency washing machines and state-of-the-art dryers with moisture sensors and eliminate the carbon impact of delivery trucks if we had laundry done off-site.

Maple Hill Farm’s commitment to sustainability continues up to the present.  In January 2015, we installed a very clean-burning, extremely efficient wood pellet boiler using sustainably harvested Maine pellets. This boiler will replace up to 90 percent of the remaining fuel oil used for hot water and space heating and uses a locally grown sustainable fuel source.

Finally, our next goal is the installation of a dual electric car charging station, hopefully this coming spring.  If we are awarded the People and Planet award, the proceeds will go toward this project. Vote for us to help create several dedicated “Electric Car Only” parking spaces along with a “fast-charge” charging station—the first at a hotel in central Maine!