Waste has become an increasing problem as more and more products are sold as In “disposable” This has led to massive problems of overflowing landfills, polluted waterways, lakes, and oceans, and in increasing factor of serious public health issues leading to beach closings and illness of the public.
These issues are further complicated by socio-economic factors such as poverty and poor access to healthcare. It is imperative for sustainable tourism operations to continue to find ways to refuse, reduce, reuse, and recycle when it comes to waste.
Refusing unnecessary packaging, reducing the waste that goes to land fills, reusing waste for compost or energy sources, and recycling are all strategies of sustainable tourism.
Some basic strategies to consider include:
Bulk purchase and choosing products with minimal packaging.
Eliminating or reduce the use of plastic carrier bags.
Using rechargeable batteries.
Provide filtered water in replacement of bottled water.
Reduce printing and use both sides of the paper.
Using dispensers in showers and vanity areas of hotel rooms.
Walt Disney World has set the industry standad with their goal to send zero waste to land fills and to half the amount they send by 2013 from 2006 baseline levels.
Some of the Walt Disney Company strategies include:
Using biosolids resulting from the waste water treatment process, food, and animal manure to compost and then give away to local agricultural operations. About 11,000 tons a year are given to local farmers.
Incorporating waste reduction into the design of products, programs, and facilities.
Reducing waste through innovative product development, supply chain management, and end of life recycling.
Recycling scrap metal (over 1200 tons a year)
Recycling cooking grease and using to power trains. (740 tons a year)
Recycling electronics (over 100 tons a year)
Communities can significantly turn pollution problems around. For example the Richard A. Heyman Environmental Proteciton facility in the Florida Keys has helped the commity go from dumping 10 million gallons a day of waste water with phosphates and nitrates into the sea to now dumping zero gallons.
The Mission statement reads: "The City of Key West Utilities Department envisions itself to be a leader in environmental protection while improving the quality of life. We will exceed federal, state and local compliance guidelines to preserve our environment by using state-of-the-art technology. We will promote teamwork and a safe workplace atmosphere through communication, education and quality training."
In 2005 Key West was presented with the Florida Department of Environmental Protections highest award for Operations Excellence. In 2004 the Florida Rural Water Association awarded OMI and Key West the Earl B. Phelps Operations Excellence Award. OMI and the City of Key West are extemely proud of these accomplishments, and they are a testament of Key West's commitment to protect our environment.
The Fine Line: Managing Threats to TourismLast Updated on 2015-09-29 14:29:00Tourism is currently one of the world’s largest industries, and while it may be a vast field full of opportunities, it also faces numerous threats to its success. Many of these threats are very clear and apparent, such as environmental degradation, climate shift, and destruction of tourist locales. However, one of the greatest threats to the industry is a little less visible, as it is that of maintaining a balance of over-industrializing and abusing natural resources.
As many tourist destinations are primarily based on the natural appeal and resources of an area, it is a tourist operator’s prime instinct to maximize as much as possible on the land and natural resources of the land. However, throughout the years, many of these operators and developers have exploited the regions in which they build, creating more problems than pleasures. In many areas, over-development and... More »
Tackling the Plastic Trash in Our Oceans Last Updated on 2015-02-18 11:55:41Article: Experts Say World Dumps 8.8 Tons of Plastic in Oceans
Article Link: http://www.sci-tech-today.com/story.xhtml?story_id=101005NXZF3A
A new study has determined that about 8.8 million ton of plastic ends up in the world’s oceans, an amount much higher than estimated in the past. By 2025, the total plastic trash in the world’s oceans will reach 170 million tons if people do not reduce their waste generation and improve the collection. This estimate is based on population trends and current waste management processes.
Currently, developing Asian countries are some of the top polluters based on how they dispose of their trash. Five countries are responsible for half of the plastic waste that goes into the oceans; they are China, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, and Sri Lanka. Out of the total trash in the ocean, China contributes 2.4 million tons of plastic,... More »
Solar-Powered Water Wheel Can Clean 50,000 Pounds of Baltimore’s Trash Per DayLast Updated on 2015-02-04 19:33:30
This post first appeared on EcoWatch.
A large wheel has been strolling the Baltimore Inner Harbor this summer, doing its best to clean the trash that has littered a city landmark and tourist attraction.
It’s called the Inner Harbor Water Wheel, and though it moves slowly, it has the capability to collect 50,000 pounds of trash. The timing for John Kellett’s solar-powered creation is crucial — hands and crab nets simply can’t keep up with the growing amount of wrappers, cigarette butts, bottles and other debris carried from storm drains into the harbor.
“It looks sort of like a cross between a spaceship and a covered wagon and an old mill,” Kellett told NPR. “It’s pretty unique in its look, but it’s also doing a really good job getting this trash out of the water.”
The wheel has become an integral part of the Healthy... More »
The Responsibility of Environmental Quality Last Updated on 2014-10-29 10:15:51Environmental quality is the responsibility of the tourism industry, the tourist business, the tourists, the suppliers, and the developers. These entities work together to create sustainable tourism, playing a significant role and influencing each other.
The Tourism Industry
The tourism industry is the umbrella that everything else falls under. Focusing on sustainable tourism practices sets a standard for other sectors in the world to follow. The tourism industry is the fastest growing industry in the world---relatively unknown places are being visited and well known destinations are significantly increasing in popularity. The environmental quality of destinations is a reflection of the tourism industry and what it deems to be acceptable for the most part. Because this industry is growing so quickly, it has the power to shift toward being ecofriendly and sustainable on a global scale.... More »
Coastal Habitat Protection through the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup DayLast Updated on 2014-04-09 22:05:47
Founded in 1972, the Ocean Conservancy has been working for over 30 years to promote coastal habitat protection through empowering and educating people to defend the ocean (Ocean Conservancy, 2014). The Conservancy recognizes that trash in the ocean compromises the health of people and ocean wildlife. In efforts to combat ocean pollution from trash, the Conservancy sponsors an initiative called the International Coastal Cleanup Day. This initiative has been sponsored by the Ocean Conservancy for over 25 years.
Highlights from the 2012 International Cleanup Day include (Ocean Conservancy, 2012):
561,633 volunteers participating globally
17,719 miles of coast covered
10,149,988 pounds of trash collected
The Ocean Conservancy also initiated a program to track the types of trash collected during the cleanup, and disseminate the... More »
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