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Energy, Waste, Water

The measurement and management of energy, waste and water are key steps to leaner more efficient production processes. Research has identified these actions are a key to reducing the various ‘footprints’ (generally accepted as measure of human demand on ecological resources) that tourism has on the environment.Read more

The measurement and management of energy, waste and water are key steps to leaner more efficient production processes. Research has identified these actions are a key to reducing the various ‘footprints’ (generally accepted as measure of human demand on ecological resources) that tourism has on the environment.  A search for measuring and managing these resources has been a cornerstone of the STCRC various research programmes that have application at both the business and destination level.

Cleaner production is a preventive, company-specific environmental protection initiative that is intended to minimise waste and emissions and maximise product output.  While improvements in resource efficiencies are also crucial to triple bottom line reporting once in place cleaner production actions can lead to significant cost savings. By analysing the flow of materials and energy in a business or destination, one tries to identify options to minimise waste and emissions out of industrial processes through source reduction strategies. Improvements of organisation and technology help to reduce or suggest better choices in use of materials and energy, and to avoid waste, waste water generation, gaseous emissions, and also waste heat and noise.

Examples measurement and management of energy, waster and waste include:

  • Documentation of consumption
  • Use of indicators and controls (to identify losses from poor planning, design,  management and  education and training)
  • Improved control and automation
  • New, low waste processes and technologies
  • Reuse /recycling of waste (internal or external)
  • Substitution of raw and auxiliary materials (especially renewable materials and energy)

As tourism as a sector has a particularly close relationship with environmental resources it can be expected to take a lead in such measures.  Increasingly management of energy, water and waste are seen as a key pathway to triple bottom line reporting, and as adaptation and mitigation actions against climate change, and engagement with the ‘green consumer’.

The STCRC has been at the forefront of science to measure (benchmark) and certify (independently verify) such initiatives for the tourism sector.  These have been taken to market via EC3 Global and their EarthCheck™ program.

Sustainable Tourism Online provides access to:

  • Numerous checklists and start-up guides from both STCRC and our partners
  • More advanced techniques for business measurement and management
  • Triple Bottom Line reporting
  • Waste water and energy management at destinations, and estimates of economic costs
  • Links between business efficiency, destination management and climate change adaptation and mitigation
  • Links to various schemes to assist business and destinations first record (benchmark) their activities and then be independently verified for environmental certification
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