Resource Use and Waste Generation by the Tourism Industry on the Big Island of Hawaii

A survey of the tourism industry on the island of Hawaii (the Big Island) in the state of Hawaii in the United States was conducted to collect baseline information on major resources (energy, food, and water consumption) and waste generation from five tourism sectors: accommodations, food and beverages (restaurants), golf courses, tourism services (tours), and rental cars. The questionnaire was developed and 50 establishments from the target sectors participated in this survey. Resource consumption and waste generation were calculated by the number of establishments, employees, and visitors. Using these factors and island-wide statistics (the number of establishments, job counts, and visitors), this study estimated the current status of island-wide water, food, and energy consumption and waste generation by these five sectors of the tourism industry. The estimate shows that the tourism sectors surveyed for this study account for 21.7% of the island's total energy consumption, 44.7% of the island-wide water consumption, and 10.7% of the island-wide waste generation. Using a per guest emission factor (such as per employee, guest room, and seat) provided in this study, the owners and managers of tourism establishments can calculate a baseline for each resource input and output. This is essential information to improve the industry's efficiency and result in economic savings.

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