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Contribution of accommodation facilities to direct emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the city of Parnaíba (Piauí State, Brazil)

Abstract

Climate change caused by the increase in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, especially carbon dioxide (CO2), will directly and indirectly affect all human activities, mainly those that are closely dependent on natural factors, such as tourism. In this context, it is necessary to expand scientific knowledge about global and sectoral emissions (transport, means of accommodation, etc.) from tourism. Thus, this article analyzed the direct emissions of CO2 of accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba (PI), and its contribution to local emissions from tourism. Therefore, it was based on the characterization of the emission sources in the accommodation sector, being selected the categories of energy, cooking gas and water consumption, and the production of solid waste, with emphasis on the WTTC and the ITP manual (2016), and on the conversion values proposed by DEFRA (2012). The results indicated that CO2 emissions per capita were similar to the world average for domestic visitors in developing countries, ie 4.01 kg/CO2, and the main contributor was energy consumption, accounting for 94.7% of emissions. In addition, the possibilities of reducing such emissions were listed with managerial, technological and educational measures in the daily hospitality activities.

Keywords
Greenhouse gases; Sustainability; Hotel sector

Resumo

As mudanças climáticas causadas pelo aumento das emissões de gases do efeito estufa (GEE), principalmente o dióxido de carbono (CO2), afetarão direta e indiretamente todas as atividades humanas, sobretudo aquelas que possuem estreita dependência dos fatores naturais, como o turismo. Nesse quadro, faz-se necessário ampliar o conhecimento científico sobre as emissões globais e setoriais (transportes, meios de hospedagem, etc.) do turismo. Assim, este artigo analisou as emissões diretas de CO2 dos meios de hospedagem da cidade de Parnaíba (PI) e sua contribuição para as emissões locais do turismo. Para tanto, baseou-se na caracterização das fontes de emissão no setor de hospedagem, sendo selecionadas as categorias consumos de energia, gás e de água, além da produção de resíduos sólidos, com ênfase no manual do WTTC e ITP (2016) e nos valores de conversão propostos pelo DEFRA (2012). Os resultados indicaram que as emissões per capita de CO2 foram similares a média mundial para visitantes domésticos em países em desenvolvimento, isto é 4,01 kg/CO2, e o principal contribuinte foi o consumo de energia, respondendo por 94,7% das emissões. Ademais, elencou-se as possibilidades de reduzir tais emissões com medidas gerenciais, tecnológicas e educativas no cotidiano das atividades de hospedagem.

Palavras-chave
Gases de Efeito Estufa; Sustentabilidade; Hotelaria

Resumen

Los cambios climáticos ocasionados por el aumento de las emisiones de gases del efecto invernadero (GEI), principalmente el dióxido de carbono (CO2), afectarán directa e indirectamente a todas las actividades humanas, sobre todo a aquellas que presentan una dependencia estrecha de los factores naturales, como el turismo. En este contexto, es necesario ampliar el conocimiento científico sobre las emisiones globales y sectoriales (transporte, medios de alojamiento, etc.) del turismo. De ahí que en este artículo se analizaran las emisiones directas de CO2 de los medios de alojamiento de la ciudad de Parnaíba (PI) y su contribución a las emisiones locales del turismo. Por lo tanto, se basó en la caracterización de las fuentes de emisión en el sector de alojamiento, seleccionando las categorías de consumo de energía, gas y agua, y la producción de residuos sólidos, con enfásis en el manual WTTC e ITP (2016), y en los valores de conversión propuestos por DEFRA (2012) . Los resultados indicaron que las emisiones per cápita de CO2 fueron similares al promedio mundial para visitantes nacionales en los países en desarrollo, es decir, 4.01 kg / CO2, y el principal contribuyente fue el consumo de energía, que representa el 94.7% de las emisiones. Además, se incluyeron las posibilidades de reducir tales emisiones con medidas generales, tecnológicas y educativas de las actividades diarias de alojamiento.

Palabras clave
Gases del efecto invernadero; Sostenibilidad; Sector hotelero

1 INTRODUCTION

It should be noted that tourism is an activity capable of boosting local economies, contributing to the conservation of natural and cultural heritage, and improving the quality of life of the receiving centers. While promoting such benefits, when not planned and managed on a sustainable basis, it can compromise the ecological stability of ecosystems and promote changes in the social and cultural patterns of local communities (Beni, 2007Beni, M. C. (2007). Análise estrutural do turismo. (12º ed. atual.). Editora SENAC, p. 425.; Cooper, Fletcher, Fyall, Gilbert, & Wanhill, 2007; Hall, 2004Hall, C.M. (2004). Planejamento turístico: Políticas, processos e relacionamentos. (2ª Ed.). Contexto, p. 279.).

In this context, a new threat to the sustainability of tourist destinations emerges: the climate changes caused by global warming, since, according to Becken (2013)Becken, S. (2013). Review of tourism and climate change as an evolving knowledge domain. Tourism Management Perspectives, 6, p. 53-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.00...
and the World Tourism Organization - UNWTO (UNWTO, 2009Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2009). From Davos to Copenhagen and beyond: Advancing tourism’s response to climate change. Madri.; 2008Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2008). Climate change and tourism – Responding to global changes. Madri.), this phenomenon can affect travel flows, the tourism production chain, and the tourists' decisions in choosing the destinations they want to visit. The loss of biodiversity, changes in climate regimes, sea level rise, disappearance of islands, are examples of negative impacts for tourism, as the sector uses them as attractions.

Tourism plays two roles in this climate crisis, on the one hand as suffering from these evils, as the activity will suffer severe impacts from the effects of changes; on the other, as a contributor to direct and indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, especially carbon dioxide (CO2), which intensify the processes that promote damage to the global climate (Sun, Lenzen, & Liu, 2019Sun, Y.Y; Lenzen, M.; Liu, B. (2019) The national tourism carbon inventory: its importance, applications and allocation frameworks. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, v.27(3), p. 360-379. https://doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2019.1578364
https://doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2019.15...
; Becken, 2019Becken, S. (2019). Decarbonising tourism: mission impossible?. Tourism Recreation Research, 44 (4), p. 419-433. https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2019.1598042
https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2019.15...
; 2013Becken, S. (2013). Review of tourism and climate change as an evolving knowledge domain. Tourism Management Perspectives, 6, p. 53-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.00...
). Scott, Hall and Gössling (2019)Scott, D.; Hall, M.; Gössling, S. (2019). Global tourism vulnerability to climate change. Annals of Tourism Research, 77, p. 49-61. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2019.05.007
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2019.05...
indicate that tourism is an extremely vulnerable activity to climate change and point out the importance of expanding scientific research in developing countries to understand the causes and consequences of the relationship between tourism and climate change, as there are regional knowledge gaps. UNWTO (2008)Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2008). Climate change and tourism – Responding to global changes. Madri. highlighted that the greatest challenge to tourism sustainability in the 21st century will be climate change.

Lenzen, Sun, Faturay, Ting, Geschke and Malik (2018)Lenzen, M.; Sun, Y.; Faturay, F.; Ting, Y.; Geschke, A.; Malik, A. (2018). The carbon footprint of global tourism. Nature Climate Change, 8, p. 522-528. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-018-0141-x
https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-018-0141-...
estimated that CO2 emissions from tourism, including transport, shopping, food, accommodation, and other activities, accounted for about 8% of global CO2 emissions, thus totaling at 4.5 GtCO2e the carbon footprint of global tourism. Among all tourism sectors, according to the UNWTO and ITF (2019)Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT; Fórum Internacional dos Transportes - ITF (2019). Transport-related CO2 emissions of the tourism sector – modellling results. Madri., transport is considered to be the most polluting, accounting for ¾ of total emissions by tourism, with emphasis on airfare as the biggest contributor. Emissions from accommodation facilities were estimated at 21% of the global amount of tourism (UNWTO, 2008Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2008). Climate change and tourism – Responding to global changes. Madri.).

In the research on direct and indirect CO2 emissions in lodging facilities, the studies conducted by Abeydeera and Karunasena (2019)Abeydeera, L. H. U. W., & Karunasena, G. (2019). Carbon Emissions of Hotels: The Case of the Sri Lankan Hotel Industry. Buildings, 9(11), 227, p.1-14. https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings9110227
https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings9110227...
, Huang, Wang and Wang (2015)Huang, K.; Wang, J.C.; Wang, Y. (2015). Analysis and benchmarking of greenhouse gas emissions of luxury hotel. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 51, p. 56-66. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2015.08.014
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2015.08.0...
, Lai, Yik, and Man (2012)Lai, J., Yik, F.; Man, C. (2012). Carbon audit: a literature review and an empirical study on a hotel. Facilities, 30(9/10), 417-431. https://doi.org/10.1108/02632771211235233
https://doi.org/10.1108/0263277121123523...
, Tsai, Tsang, and Cheng stand out (2012)Tsai, H.; Tsang, N. K. F.; Cheng, S. K. Y. (2012). Hotel employees' perceptions on corporate social responsibility: the case of Hong Kong. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 31(4), p. 1143-1154. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2012.02.002
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2012.02.0...
, Teng, Horng, Hu, Chien and Shen (2012), Chan (2012)Chan, W. (2012). Energy benchmarking in support of low carbon hotel: Developments, challenges, and approaches in China. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 31, p. 1130-1142. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2012.02.001
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2012.02.0...
, Filimonau, Grosbois and Fennell (2011)Grosbois, D.; Fennell, D. (2011). Carbon Footprint of the Global Hotel Companies: Comparison of Methodologies and Results, Tourism Recreation Research, 36(3), 231-245. https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2011.11081669
https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2011.11...
, Dickinson, Robbins, and Huijbregts (2011), Rosselló-Batle, Moià, Cladera, and Martínez (2010)Rossselló-Batle, B.; Moià, A,. Cladera, A.; Martínez, V. (2010). Energy use, CO2 emissions and waste throughtout the life cycle of a sample of hotels inte the Balteric Islands. Energy and Building, 42, p. 547-558. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enbuild.2009.10.024
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enbuild.2009.1...
, and Taylor, Peacock, Banfill, and Shao (2010)Taylor, S., Peacock, A., Banfill, P.; Shao, L. (2010). Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from UK hotels in 2030. Building and environment, 45(6), 1389-1400. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.buildenv.2009.12.001
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.buildenv.2009....
, pointed out the relevance of the analysis of these emissions for the understanding of the global and local tourist emissions picture and listed knowledge gaps that need to be studied to expand knowledge on this topic. In developing countries such research is scarce, especially in South America, as reported by several authors (Scott, Hall, & Gössling, 2019Scott, D.; Hall, M.; Gössling, S. (2019). Global tourism vulnerability to climate change. Annals of Tourism Research, 77, p. 49-61. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2019.05.007
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2019.05...
).

In accordance with Filimonau, Dickinson, Robbins and Huijbregts (2011), there is a prevalence of investigations carried out notably on the European and Asian continents, thus requiring a geographic expansion of studies to understand the carbon footprint of lodging facilities and thereby contribute to the evolution of scientific knowledge about the global contribution of GHG emissions in that sector. Using this framework, the present study examined the contribution of accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba (PI) to direct CO2 emissions, based on the categories of energy, water, and cooking gas consumption and the production of solid waste, as well as listing mitigating measures to align the sector's development with management challenges in times of climate crisis.

The methodological approach of this research was based on the use of structured interviews with the managers of the investigated accommodation facilities to characterize the variables intended to compose the picture of local CO2 emissions. After the data collection, the information was analyzed with emphasis on manuals from the World Travel & Tourism Council – WTTC, the International Tourism Partnership - ITP (2016)WTTC - WORLD TRAVEL & TOURISM COUNCIL; ITP – INTERNATIONAL TOURISM PARTNERSHIP (2016). Hotel Carbon Measurement Iniciative – v.1.1. London, UK., and the United Kingdom Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA, 2012DEFRA – DEPARTMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS. (2012). Guidelines to DEFRA’s GHG conversions ator. London.).

This article starts with the presentation of the theoretical framework, describing the current state of studies and research on the topic of CO2 emissions in accommodation facilities, as well as the discussion of conceptual and methodological issues that guided the development of investigations on that topic. In sequence, the methodological procedures are described, with the characterization of the study area and the details of the data analysis process based on the aforementioned manuals. The results are presented and discussed in the following topic, with the exposure of the collected data and its comparison with other studies, as well as the proposal of managerial, technological, and educational measures aimed at mitigating emissions in the hotel sector. In the concluding remarks, general reflections and trends arising from the results obtained are listed, research limitations are presented, as well as suggestions for further studies to contribute to the advancement of scientific knowledge on the examined subject.

2 ACCOMMODATION FACILITIES AND CARBON DIOXIDE EMISSIONS (CO2)

The strategies for understanding the association of climate change with tourism, according to Sun, Lenzen and Liu (2019)Sun, Y.Y; Lenzen, M.; Liu, B. (2019) The national tourism carbon inventory: its importance, applications and allocation frameworks. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, v.27(3), p. 360-379. https://doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2019.1578364
https://doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2019.15...
, are mainly anchored in the characterization of emissions based on national and sector inventories (transport, food, accommodation facilities, recreational activities etc.). However, the authors impose a reflection on the urgency of improving these inventories for the effective management of carbon in tourism.

Lai, Yik and Man (2012)Lai, J., Yik, F.; Man, C. (2012). Carbon audit: a literature review and an empirical study on a hotel. Facilities, 30(9/10), 417-431. https://doi.org/10.1108/02632771211235233
https://doi.org/10.1108/0263277121123523...
mention that globally manuals for carbon auditing are being developed for the quantification and qualification of sectoral emissions, however those intended to understand the emissions produced in the hotel sector are limited. They also reveal that the audits employed in hotels, through empirical investigations, are essential to characterize the sources and extent of emissions in the sector, as well as to contribute to the analysis of the carbon footprint in these organizations, thus promoting management decisions aimed at mitigating carbon emissions.

In their study with 150 hotel groups, Grosbois and Fennell (2011)Grosbois, D.; Fennell, D. (2011). Carbon Footprint of the Global Hotel Companies: Comparison of Methodologies and Results, Tourism Recreation Research, 36(3), 231-245. https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2011.11081669
https://doi.org/10.1080/02508281.2011.11...
reported that the measurement of the carbon footprint in lodging facilities is scarce, and when carried out by the investigated hotel companies they are inaccurate and with limited information on the methodologies used for estimating emissions. Associated with this limitation, the authors highlighted the lack of transparency and the selective way of choosing the reported data, which made it difficult to compare the performances of different companies in the hotel sector.

According to Abeydeera and Karunasena (2019)Abeydeera, L. H. U. W., & Karunasena, G. (2019). Carbon Emissions of Hotels: The Case of the Sri Lankan Hotel Industry. Buildings, 9(11), 227, p.1-14. https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings9110227
https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings9110227...
, there are 18 surveys referring to CO2 emissions in accommodation facilities, with a focus on the carbon footprint, energy consumption, life cycle assessment, and environmental and energy audits. The studies are concentrated mainly on European and Mediterranean countries, with few works being carried out in developing countries.

In such a context, information on the general picture of direct emissions from accommodation facilities is concentrated in some regions, on traditional kinds of accommodation and on the behavior of a given accommodation profile. In the words of Becken (2013)Becken, S. (2013). Review of tourism and climate change as an evolving knowledge domain. Tourism Management Perspectives, 6, p. 53-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.00...
and Gössling (2013)Gössling, S. (2013). National emissions from tourism: An overlooked challenge? Energy Policy, 59, p. 433-442, 2013. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2013.03.058
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2013.03....
, the accommodation sector has an important responsibility in CO2 emissions regarding tourism, especially due to energy and water consumption, and production of solid waste, contributing significantly to the framework of global direct and indirect CO2 emissions. It is considered that in studies on tourist emissions resulting from the production and disposal of solid waste, methane gas (CH4) should be incorporated into the analytical process, as it is one of the main gases that trigger climate change and derives notably from the decomposition of organic waste in landfills and dumps.

Detailing consumption, it was noted that the main sources of energy consumption are the use of water, gas, and electricity (Wu & Shi, 2011Wu, P.; Shi P. (2011). An estimation of energy consumption and CO2 emissions in tourism sector of China. Journal of Geographical Sciences, 21(4), p.733-745. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-z
https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-...
). Regarding the average consumption per night, in some countries, the data varies: New Zealand - 43 kWh/per night, Majorca - 14 kWh/per night, Hong Kong - 3 kWh/per night (Becken; Frampton, & Simmons, 2001Becken, S.; Frampton, C.; Simmons, D. (2001). Energy consumption patterns in the accommodation sector: The New Zeland Case. Ecological Economics, 39(3), p. 371-386. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0921-8009(01)00229-4
https://doi.org/10.1016/S0921-8009(01)00...
), China - 43 kWh/per night (Wu & Shi, 2011Wu, P.; Shi P. (2011). An estimation of energy consumption and CO2 emissions in tourism sector of China. Journal of Geographical Sciences, 21(4), p.733-745. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-z
https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-...
), among others. Gössling (2001)Gössling, S. (2001). Tourism, economic transition and environmental degradation: interacting processes in a Tanzanian Coastal community. Tourism Geographies, 3(4), p. 230-254, 2001. https://doi.org/10.1080/146166800110070504
https://doi.org/10.1080/1461668001100705...
proposed that the average value of energy consumed by the hotel sector is 36 kWh/per night. In addition, as noted by the authors, energy expenditure depends on the size and typology of the accommodation establishment, the characteristics of the equipment used in the establishments, the services offered, and the behavior of guests and employees in the hotel facility.

Gössling (2013)Gössling, S. (2013). National emissions from tourism: An overlooked challenge? Energy Policy, 59, p. 433-442, 2013. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2013.03.058
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2013.03....
observes that the consumption of water in the lodging facilities comes mainly from the guests’ bath and from cleaning activities. The author also mentions activities such as laundry service and washing utensils after meals, which can be minimized using equipment and low water consumption measures, such as taps and showers that regulate the water flow.

In the words of Jimmy, Munna and Khan (2020)Jimmy, A.N.; Munna, M.H.; Khan, N.A. (2020). Tourists’ Water Consumption Attitude in Cox’s Bazaar Hotels – A Perception Assessment. International Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, 6(2), p. 24-29., hotels consume water significantly to maintain the landscape and their facilities, notably the rooms, kitchens, and recreational areas. Furthermore, the authors emphasize the relevance of the rational use of water resources to allow present and future generations to have access to this resource. In addition, Rajini and Samaracon (2016) listed the factors that contribute to the expenditure of water in the hotel environment, with emphasis on the following: the establishment built area size, the hotel category, the number of guests and the occupation rate, the availability of laundry service, the number of employees, the use of water controlling technologies, the adoption of environmental management programs, the behavior and habits of guests, individual responses to institutional and social standards, among others.

When estimating that each guest generates, on average, more than 1 kg of solid waste per day, Bohdanowicz (2005)Bohdanowicz, P. (2005). European hoteliers’ environmental atitudes: greening the business. Cornell Hotel and Restaurant Administration Quartely, 46(2), p. 188-204. https://doi.org/10.1177/0010880404273891
https://doi.org/10.1177/0010880404273891...
calls attention to recycling actions, reusing materials, and encouraging conscious consumption as essential attitudes to reduce carbon emissions resulting from solid waste. However, the author emphasized that the production of organic waste in the kitchen environment is still an element that has caught the attention of researchers, because of wasting being the rule and recycling the exception. In this scope, it is recommended that energy expenditure in the recycling process be considered as an analytical factor. Such a strategy will only be efficient if there is an adequate energy balance in choosing the transformation method, considering the specificities of the potential inputs and the resulting costs for transporting the recyclable materials to the processing site. Therefore, the option for recycling the waste is relevant but one must consider the above factors to mitigate GHG emissions.

In this context, Singh, Cranage and Nath (2014)Singh, N., Cranage, D. A.; Nath, A. (2014). Estimation of GHG emission from hotel industry. Anatolia, 25(1), 39-48. https://doi.org/10.1080/13032917.2013.822817
https://doi.org/10.1080/13032917.2013.82...
considered that the characterization of solid waste management in hotel organizations is fundamental to the composition of the picture regarding sectorial emissions, since the production and subsequent disposal in landfills produces the release of harmful gases, especially methane (CH4), the contamination of ground and surface water etc. For this reason, the authors reinforced the need to expand research, since a significant number of studies on CO2 emissions in lodging facilities rest in the analysis of the infrastructure and design of buildings, transport, energy and water consumption, being scarce those that are intended to examine the production of waste and its respective local emissions in hotel organizations.

In reflection, Teng, Horn, Hu, Chien and Shen (2012)Teng, C.; Horng, J.; Hu, M.; Chien, L.; Shen, Y. (2012). Developing energy conservation and carbon reduction indicators for the hotel industry in Taiwan. International Journal of Hospitality Management, v. 31, p. 199-208. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2011.06.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2011.06.0...
discussed that climate change promoted an increase in public awareness about energy consumption and derived carbon emissions and that studies indicate that for the effectiveness of sustainable management in the hotel industry it is essential to propose energy efficiency measures in the industry operations. Thus, they proposed 32 indicators for the implementation of energy conservation measures and reduction of carbon emissions in accommodation facilities, which require the support of managers and the engagement of employees and guests. As examples of these indicators, there are the recycling and reuse of waste water, the monitoring of energy consumption, water and solid waste, adjustments in the temperatures of air conditioning units, provision of information for guests on public transport and bicycle rentals, purchase of materials from local suppliers, adoption of natural lighting and ventilation in the building, etc.

In addition, Al-Aomar and Hussain (2017)Al-Aomar, H.; Hussain, M. (2017). An assessment of green practices in a hotel supply chain: A study of UAE hotel. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, 32, p. 71-81. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhtm.2017.04.002
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhtm.2017.04.0...
emphasize that if planned and focused on meeting the principles of sustainability, the hotel industry can contribute to a change in consumption habits in society, generating less environmental impact and, therefore, can be considered as low carbon tourism. It is important to emphasize that the technologies and practices applied to hotels must be incorporated from the facility architectural project and be thought as one, so that the building, in addition to energy efficiency, has a character of sustainable construction. The main objective of these technologies is to improve the management of environmental resources, especially electricity and water, reducing costs, contributing to the conservation of the environment, and showing an image of an environmentally responsible company.

According to Kim, Lee and Fairhurst (2017)Kim, S., Lee, K.; Fairhurst, A. (2017). The review of “green” research in hospitality, 2000-2014: Current trends and future research directions. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 29(1), 226-247. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-11-2014-0562
https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-11-2014-05...
, there was a significant increase in studies on sustainable practices in lodging facilities, especially since the 2000s. Most of these studies highlight that the main adopted practices are aimed at the rational use of energy and water (especially with the installation of more modern and eco-efficient equipment) and at the incorporation of waste recycling in the hotel companies. The authors consider that sustainable practices are notably adopted because of the benefits resulting from business efficiency and as a competitive differential and, therefore, do not reflect a real concern of managers with environmental conservation.

In this theoretical picture, Zhang, Joglekar, Heineke and Verma (2014)Zhang, J.Z.; Joglekar, N.; Heineke, J.; Verma, R. (2014). Eco-efficiency of Service Co-production: Connecting Eco-certifications and Resource Efficiency in U.S. Hotels. Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, 55(3), p. 252–264. https://doi.org/10.1177/1938965514533988
https://doi.org/10.1177/1938965514533988...
, when discussing the ecoefficiency theme in the hotel sector, stated that the studies are especially directed to the understanding of the financial impacts of the sustainability actions, perception and behavior of guests and employees on sustainable practices, environmental programs, and certification initiatives, etc.

Furthermore, according to Huang and Deng (2011)Huang, C.; Deng, H. (2011). The model of developing low-carbon tourism in the leisure economy. Energy Procedia, 5, p. 1974-1978. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2011.03.339
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2011.03...
, it is reinforced that in order to mitigate CO2 emissions from hotels, there is a need for alignment with the low carbon tourism model, which is intended to propose a reflection on global processes and sectors of tourism that produce CO2 emissions and their influences on the internal and external environments. This model leads to a relevant debate on the dimensioning of the carbon footprint of tourism, as a foundation for tourism planning and management in the context of global climate changes characterization.

In this context, it is considered that the characterization of the sectorial emissions of the hospitality sector will help in the understanding of the sector's contribution to the global amount of CO2 emissions from the tourist activity, as well as allowing to identify the main consumption in the facility and their respective environmental impacts.

3 METHODOLOGICAL PROCEDURES

3.1 Characterization of the study area

The city of Parnaíba is located in the northern portion of the state of Piauí, in the northeastern region of Brazil (Figure 1). It has an estimated population of 152.653, with a gross domestic product (GDP) per capita of R$ 12.787,32 and a municipal human development index (MHDI) of 0.687 (IBGE Cidades, 2019IBGE – Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística. (2019). Cidades. Recuperado em out. 10, 2019, de https://cidades.ibge.gov.br/brasil/pi/parnaiba/panorama
https://cidades.ibge.gov.br/brasil/pi/pa...
). Parnaíba stands out as the second largest GDP rate and population of the state, and 343 km from the capital Teresina, via BR-343. The city also stands out as commercial and health centers for neighboring cities, and has an international airport with only one weekly commercial flight from Azul Airline Company, bound for Campinas (SP).

In terms of tourism, the city is part of the tourist region called Polo Costa do Delta and it is one of the 65 tourism-inducing destinations in Brazil. Another highlight is its integration with the national route named Rota das Emoções (SEBRAE, 2014), in association with neighboring states of Ceará and Maranhão. The main tourist attractions of the city are the Parnaíba Delta, Portinho Lagoon, Pedra do Sal Beach, and the cultural heritage downtown.

Figure 1
Location map of the city of Parnaíba in the state of Piauí

Regarding the typology of the investigated accommodation facilities in the city, the categories of inns and hotels predominated, respectively, with an average of 32 housing units (HUs) and 42 beds per establishment. Most establishments are family-owned and only two belong to hotel chains, one national and the other international. All of them offer only one meal per day to guests (breakfast), they have an average of 14 permanent employees and the average time of 16 years working in the city. Inside the HUs, the main equipment listed are air conditioning units (split model), electric shower, minibar, TV, and phone.

3.2 Methods and techniques

This research is characterized as descriptive and exploratory (Gil, 1999Gil, A.C. (1999) Métodos e técnicas de pesquisa social. (5ª ed.). Atlas.), as the theme of CO2 emissions in lodging facilities is still little investigated in the Brazilian literature, thus requiring more knowledge to contribute to the construction and expansion of an emerging field of study in the context of climate change.

The data collection technique used was the structured interview (Gil, 1999Gil, A.C. (1999) Métodos e técnicas de pesquisa social. (5ª ed.). Atlas.) applied together with the managers of the accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba (Appendix A). The universe of research was the lodging facilities registered with CADASTUR (Brazil, 2018Brasil. (2018). CADASTUR – Fazendo o turismo legal. Recuperado em nov. 17, 2018, de https://cadastur.turismo.gov.br/hotsite/#!/public/sou-turista/inicio.
https://cadastur.turismo.gov.br/hotsite/...
), totaling 17 registered companies. Among them, a sample of 10 lodging facilities (58% of the total) were selected to carry out the research. In addition, it is emphasized that the intention was to operate the study on all registered equipment, however, some of them did not authorize the research, so it was only possible to carry it out on those with the proper authorization.

The analysis and characterization of the direct CO2 emissions from the lodging facilities was adapted from the methodology proposed by the World Travel & Tourism Council - WTTC and International Tourism Partnership - ITP (2016)WTTC - WORLD TRAVEL & TOURISM COUNCIL; ITP – INTERNATIONAL TOURISM PARTNERSHIP (2016). Hotel Carbon Measurement Iniciative – v.1.1. London, UK., detailed in the Hotel Carbon Measurement Initiative - v.1.1, and in the manual “Guidelines to DEFRA's GHG conversions factor”, organized by the United Kingdom Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA, 2012DEFRA – DEPARTMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS. (2012). Guidelines to DEFRA’s GHG conversions ator. London.).

The methodology proposed by the WTTC and the ITP (2016)WTTC - WORLD TRAVEL & TOURISM COUNCIL; ITP – INTERNATIONAL TOURISM PARTNERSHIP (2016). Hotel Carbon Measurement Iniciative – v.1.1. London, UK. consists of a tool that allows the lodging facilities to measure and report CO2 emissions, allowing the understanding of the carbon footprint of guests and the different types of accommodation. According to the institutions, about 24 thousand hotels use this methodological platform in the organizational environment to quantify and qualify their sectorial emissions, as manuals and online support systems are freely available to interested parties.

Thus, the consumption of energy, cooking gas, and water, and the production of organic and inorganic waste were defined as analytical categories. Chart 1 presents the details of the emission sources and their respective variables to support the referred investigation process.

Chart 1
Emission sources and variables for the analysis of direct CO2 emissions

Thus, the data collected through these variables were transformed into CO2 emissions based on the conversion factors proposed by DEFRA (2012)DEFRA – DEPARTMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS. (2012). Guidelines to DEFRA’s GHG conversions ator. London.. The formula below demonstrates the procedure for estimating emissions.

E ( C O 2 ) :   Σ Q i   ×   F c

Legend:

E(CO2): total CO2 emissions in kilograms (kg);

Qi: energy consumption in kilowatt hours (kWh), water consumption in liters (l), cooking gas consumption in cubic meters (m3), and waste production in kilograms (kg);

Fc: conversion factors to transform the collected data into kgCO2, as proposed by DEFRA (2012)DEFRA – DEPARTMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS. (2012). Guidelines to DEFRA’s GHG conversions ator. London..

In summary, it is reinforced that the process of analysis of direct CO2 emissions in the investigated accommodation facilities was based on the application of structured interviews with the managers of these companies to collect data in the mater of energy, gas, and water consumption, and in the measurement of the daily production of solid waste, which was later converted into kilograms of carbon (kgCO2) based on the conversion factors proposed by DEFRA (2012)DEFRA – DEPARTMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS. (2012). Guidelines to DEFRA’s GHG conversions ator. London.. Furthermore, managerial, technological, and educational measures were listed in each variable investigated as a way to mitigate the emissions described.

4 RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

In this section, the results are exposed and compared with other international and national studies that address the researched problem. It begins with the exposure and discussion of the collected data regarding the energy consumption, production of solid waste and consumption of water and gas variables in the investigated accommodation facilities, with the subsequent conversion of the aforementioned data into CO2 emissions. Throughout the text, managerial, technological, and educational measures are listed to mitigate the characterized emissions, as well as the reflections on the connections between the composition of the investigated variables and the general picture of emissions in lodging facilities.

Regarding energy consumption in the accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba (PI), it was observed that the daily average was 192.5 kWh, with an average of 9.0 kWh per night (Table 1).

Table 1
Daily energy consumption (kWh) in the accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba

Based on Table 1 and Figure 2, it was noted that the recorded consumption rate of 9.0 kWh/per night was lower than that of other tourist destinations, such as New Zealand (Becken, 2013Becken, S. (2013). Review of tourism and climate change as an evolving knowledge domain. Tourism Management Perspectives, 6, p. 53-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.00...
), Majorca (Wu & Shi, 2011Wu, P.; Shi P. (2011). An estimation of energy consumption and CO2 emissions in tourism sector of China. Journal of Geographical Sciences, 21(4), p.733-745. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-z
https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-...
) and China (Wu & Shi, 2011Wu, P.; Shi P. (2011). An estimation of energy consumption and CO2 emissions in tourism sector of China. Journal of Geographical Sciences, 21(4), p.733-745. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-z
https://doi.org/10.1007/s11442-011-0876-...
), and superior to that of Hong Kong (Becken, 2013Becken, S. (2013). Review of tourism and climate change as an evolving knowledge domain. Tourism Management Perspectives, 6, p. 53-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmp.2012.11.00...
). It should be noted that Gössling (2011)Gössling, S.; Garrod, B.; Aall, C.; Hille, J.; Peeters, P. (2011). Food management in tourism: Reducing tourism’s carbon footprint. Tourism Management, 32, p. 534-543. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2010.04.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2010.0...
proposed that the average value of energy consumed by the hotel sector is 36 kWh/per night and the UNWTO (2008)Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2008). Climate change and tourism – Responding to global changes. Madri. pointed out that the average consumption is 32.4 kWh/per night.

Figure 2
Consumption of kWh/per night in the lodging facilities in Parnaíba x tourist destinations

The explanation for lower consumption of kWh of the accommodation facilities in Parnaíba and that of some countries and below the world average (Figure 2) is due to the fact that guests spend part of the day outside the facility, visiting tourist attractions in the region. Other reasons are due to the typology of the accommodation facilities (hotels and inns) and the dimension of the equipment and services offered, since most of the analyzed establishment did not have large leisure areas, laundry facilities and only offered one meal a day, in this case, breakfast.

It is noteworthy that in only one accommodation facility the energy consumption was far above the average compared to the other analyzed accommodations facilities, because this facility provides laundry service to meet internal and external demands, thus contributing to a significant increase in consumption rates. Despite the smaller dimension of the accommodation facilities and the limitation of the available hotel services having contributed to the low consumption of kWh/per night, with the exception of the lodging facility that provides laundry service, it is necessary to pay attention to the expansion and diversification of the hotel sector in the city and surrounding regions, with the consequent increase in energy consumption.

In this perspective, according to Teng, Horng, Hu, Chien and Shen (2012)Teng, C.; Horng, J.; Hu, M.; Chien, L.; Shen, Y. (2012). Developing energy conservation and carbon reduction indicators for the hotel industry in Taiwan. International Journal of Hospitality Management, v. 31, p. 199-208. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2011.06.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2011.06.0...
, it is possible to reduce 20 to 40% of energy consumption in hotels without compromising the functionality of the various activities available in the establishment. To this end, the authors recommend incorporating low energy consumption equipment and services, which consists of an efficient technological measure with a high financial and environmental return.

Furthermore, the main objective of these technologies is to improve the management of natural resources, especially electricity and water, reducing costs, contributing to the conservation of natural resources, and showing an image of an environmentally responsible company. In the electricity consumption category, the total and per night CO2 emissions were 82.7 kgCO2 and 3.8 CO2, respectively, as shown in Table 2.

Table 2
Description of the total and per night emissions of the visitors’ daily energy consumption category in the lodging facilities in Parnaíba

It was observed that the total and per night CO2 emissions from the lodging facilities were 47.9 kgCO2 and 3.8 kgCO2 (Table 2), respectively, and reflected the typology of the predominant accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba, which was mainly of inns, that is, smaller dimensions facilities, with fewer housing units and hotel services. In this scenario, Yu-Guo and Zhen-Fang (2014)Yu-Guo, T.; Zhen-Fang, H. (2014). Review of accounting for carbon dioxide emissions from tourism at different spatial scales. Acta Ecologica Sinica, 34, p. 246-254. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chnaes.2014.03.007
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chnaes.2014.03...
pointed out that the CO2 emissions in the lodging facilities vary according to the typology examined and its location, and can range from 1.7 to 145.1 kg CO2/per night.

It is reinforced that in the hotel sector energy consumption was the main responsible for CO2 emissions, since the use of air conditioning, television, electric shower, and minibar, demanded the intense use of this energy source. Thus, the mitigation of these emissions could occur using renewable energies, such as solar and wind, by replacing old and more polluting equipment, by waste recycling and by implementing an environmental management system.

It is added that according to the UNWTO (2009)Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2009). From Davos to Copenhagen and beyond: Advancing tourism’s response to climate change. Madri., one of the sustainable measures to reduce energy consumption in hotels is the use of keycards for entry to hotel rooms, which allows the energy systems of the apartments to go automatically in or off when keycards are inserted or removed from the base device. According to the United Nations Environment Program - UNEP (2011)United Nations Environmental Programme – UNEP. (2011). Towards a green economy: pathways to sustainable development and poverty eradication. Nairobi., investments in technological efficiency can reduce tourist emissions by 38% and thus, the replacement of transport modes, the decrease in the time spent in the hotel rooms in 44% and the combination of both would contribute to curb CO2 emissions in 2035 by around 68%.

In addition to these mitigating measures, the reduction in energy consumption depended on educational actions directed at guests and employees. According to Horng, Hu, Teng, Hsiao and Liu (2013)Horng, J.; Hu, M.; Teng, C.; Hsiao, H.; Liu, S. (2013). Development and validation of the low-carbon literacy scale among practitioners in the Taiwanese tourism industry. Tourism Management, 35, p. 255-262. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2012.08.001
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2012.0...
educational actions to sensitize the diverse participants in the tourist experience must be based on the principles of low carbon literacy, with emphasis on the themes of climate change, carbon emissions, efficiency in the use of energy, among others. In sequence, the daily production of total and per capita waste in the investigated accommodation facilities are listed in Table 3.

Table 3
Total and per capita waste production in Parnaíba’s lodging facilities

It can be noted in Table 3 that the daily waste production in the lodging facilities in Parnaíba was 8.0 kg, with a per capita average of 0.27 kg. This rate is lower than the volume generated by other accommodation facilities in Brazil and the average of residents in Brazil (Figure 3).

Figure 3
Per capita production of waste from visitors in lodging facilities and from residents in Brazil

The average production of waste in the accommodation facilities in Parnaíba was significantly lower than that of residents in Brazil. Therefore, the generated waste volume in the accommodation facilities in Parnaíba corresponded to only 20% of the total generated in homes (Figure 3). This finding is in line with that of De Conto, Bonatto, Feldkircher and Posser (2015)De Conto, S.M.; Bonatto, G.; Feldkircher, E.G.; Posser, L. (2015). Geração de resíduos sólidos em um meio de hospedagem: um estudo de caso. In: ICTR 2004 - Congresso Brasileiro De Ciência E Tecnologia Em Resíduos E Desenvolvimento Sustentável, Florianopólis. Anais... Florianópolis (SC): NISAM-USP., who identified that the per capita production of solid waste per day in the lodging facilities of Canela (RS) was on average 0.87 kg, composed by 72.8% putrescible organic matter, and the factors that influenced the volume of solid waste were the number of guests and staff, seasonality, hotel classification, the existence of gardens and parks, the services offered to guests, the age group, the purchasing power of guests, and the reason for the stay.

Peruchinn, Ferrão, Guidoni, Corrêa and Corrêa (2015)Peruchinn, B.; Ferrão, A.L.L.C.; Guidoni, L.L.C.; Corrêa, E.K.; Corrêa, L. B. (2015). Estudo na geração dos resíduos sólidos em hotel. Turismo – Visão e Ação, 17(2), p.301-322. https://doi.org/10.14210/rtva.v17n2.p301-322
https://doi.org/10.14210/rtva.v17n2.p301...
estimated per capita waste production in the establishments in Pelotas (RS) at 0.37 kg, due to the accommodation facilities serving only one meal a day and the guests’ profile, since most of them were business travelers and spent little time in the accommodation facility. They also pointed out that the number of guests, employees and other people influenced the amount of waste generated. Singh, Cranage and Nath (2014)Singh, N., Cranage, D. A.; Nath, A. (2014). Estimation of GHG emission from hotel industry. Anatolia, 25(1), 39-48. https://doi.org/10.1080/13032917.2013.822817
https://doi.org/10.1080/13032917.2013.82...
estimated that in India the production of waste per room in hotels ranged from 1 - 6 kg, and it was necessary to promote the idea of low carbon among guests to decrease such production.

Despite this problem, sustainable practices could easily be developed in the lodging facilities, such as selective collection, sending waste to waste pickers' cooperatives, storage and correct disposal of cooking oil, search for local suppliers, etc. Also, the positions of the entrepreneurs were found to be relevant when investing in environmental education actions, with employees and with guests, through educational campaigns for the reuse of towels and the incentive to the conscious consumption of energy, water, and food products.

Therefore, it is recognized the implementation of projects for selective collection and environmental awareness as necessary actions to consolidate the rational use of solid waste in the lodging facilities. However, on the other hand, it is emphasized that merely separating waste internally, without the adoption of public policies for solid waste management in cities, is only a palliative for the problem.

In order to face this conflict, it is imperative that the state of Piauí obeys the principles and objectives of the Solid Waste National Policy, established by Law 12.305/2010 and its respective instruments: solid waste plans; inventories and the annual solid waste reporting system; selective collection, reverse logistics systems; encouraging the creation and development of cooperatives; environmental, sanitary and agricultural monitoring and inspection; technical and financial cooperation between the public and private sectors for the development of research on new products, methods, processes and technologies for management, recycling, reuse, waste treatment and environmentally appropriate final disposal of waste; scientific and technological research and environmental education (Brasil, 2010Brasil. (2010). Lei n. 12.305, de 2 de agosto de 2010. Institui a Política Nacional de Resíduos Sólidos. Diário Oficial da República Federativa do Brasil. Brasília.).

In this context, it is emphasized that two lodging facilities had equipment and actions to minimize the generation of waste in the accommodations, and revealed the entrepreneurs' initiatives for waste separation and later collection and recycling. This contextualization made it possible to verify that although entrepreneurs were aware of the inexistence of a selective collection system in the municipality of Parnaíba, they did their part by separating the compounds, with the perspective that the procedure would be recognized and validated by the Parnaíba City Hall in the later stages of the solid waste management process.

Given the waste production presented in Table 4, the corresponding total and per capita CO2 emissions are listed.

Table 4
Description of the total and per capita emissions of the waste production category in the lodging facilities in the city of Parnaíba

Table 4 shows that the daily averages of total and per capita CO2 emissions from waste production in the lodging facilities were 14.1 and 0.49 respectively, derived mainly from organic and inorganic residues generated during breakfast. In the facilities that optionally offered snacks and meals, it was found that the total and per capita CO2 emissions were higher, in this case, 21.2 and 0.81 kgCO2, respectively.

According to Gössling, Garrod, Aall, Hille and Peeters (2011)Gössling, S.; Garrod, B.; Aall, C.; Hille, J.; Peeters, P. (2011). Food management in tourism: Reducing tourism’s carbon footprint. Tourism Management, 32, p. 534-543. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2010.04.006
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2010.0...
, restaurants in a tourist destination also cause climate change, since the food production chain releases carbon significantly, mainly through agriculture, processing, transportation, and food preparation. Thus, to minimize emissions, they suggest that food could be purchased close to tourist destinations, with a view to promoting family farming and its diversification, to avoid the purchase of imported foods that require air transportation and other measures. In relation to the other categories analyzed, water and cooking gas consumption were less significant in relation to energy consumption and the production of solid waste (Table 5).

Table 5
Values referring to water (l) and cooking gas (m3) consumption and CO2 emissions in the lodging facilities in the city of Parnaíba

As specified in Table 5, it was noted that water and cooking gas consumption produced emissions of 0.0006 and 0.050 kgCO2/per night, respectively, which are low values when compared to the previous categories. In addition, the consumption of 26.6 liters of water/per night was lower than the estimates proposed by Gössling et al. (2012)Gössling, S. Peeters, P.; Hall, C.M.; Ceron, J. Dubois G.; Lehmann, L.; Scott, D. (2012). Tourism and water use: Supply, demand, and security. An international review. Tourism Management, 33, p.1-15. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2011.03.015
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2011.0...
, that guests consume between 84-2000 liters/day of water in lodging facilities, and that this variation stems from the variety and classification of the accommodation facilities. In Brazil, the average water consumption rate per inhabitant is 150 liters (Brasil, 2014Brasil. Ministério das Cidades. (2014). Sistema Nacional de Informações sobre Saneamento – SNIS. Diagnóstico dos serviços de água e esgotos. Brasília.).

In such a context, Styles, Schoenberger and Galvez-Martos (2015) highlights that water stress is an extreme challenge for tourist destinations. In the hotel sector they estimated that the average consumption rate per night was ≤ 140 liters, originating especially from the water expenditure in the swimming pool, kitchen (dish washing), water flow from toilets and water flow from taps and showers at the HUs.

In this sense, it is reinforced that other management measures could be incorporated for the rational use of water resources in hotel enterprises, such as the reuse of rainwater, the control of water flow in the toilets and the efficiency in irrigation of gardens and in cleaning operations in general. With this in mind, Vieira's (2004, p. 9)Vieira, E.V. (2004). Desperdício em hotelaria: soluções para evitar. Educs. reflection on the wasteful tendency of the hotel sector is made explicit and calls attention to the behavior of most guests whom generate large expenses with actions such as “long baths, running water in the washbasin without concern for the consumption it represents, air conditioning working with open doors and windows and other forms of waste that are beyond the control of the hotel management”.

Table 6 presents the summary of per capita CO2 emissions of accommodation facilities and the percentage contribution of each analyzed category.

Table 6
Summary of per capita CO2 emissions of accommodation facilities in the city of Parnaíba

It was shown that overnight emissions from Parnaíba's lodging facilities amounted to 4.01 kgCO2, mainly derived from the consumption of electricity, with 94.7% of the total, followed by the production of waste (4.8%) and consumption of water (1.2%), and cooking gas (0.7%). Such data are similar to the world average of CO2 emissions in accommodation facilities, since, according to the UNWTO (2008)Organização Mundial Do Turismo – OMT. (2008). Climate change and tourism – Responding to global changes. Madri., the average of emissions per night is 4.0 kg CO2 for domestic visitors and from developing countries.

This context revealed that the highest emissions were related to the consumption of electricity, because the facilities do not use renewable sources, such as solar and wind energy, and do not adopt educational measures directed at employees and guests. In this perspective, it is understood that in the face of the emerging climate crisis, the accommodation facilities will need to develop adaptation and mitigation actions to remain competitive, such as reducing water and energy consumption, and replacing the fossil fuel matrix with renewable energies sources.

To this end, it is understood that low-carbon tourism can be configured in a strategic development model for environmental management in lodging facilities, due to the availability of sustainable technologies that can replace the most polluting technologies, which can contribute to the rational use of energy and water, and to mitigate CO2 emissions. However, the materiality of this procedure requires the establishment of government incentives, businessmen and users’ awareness, and the mobilization of tourist actors. Furthermore, it was understood that in a scenario of climatic uncertainties that affects tourism development, knowing and characterizing the picture of emissions in attractions and sectors became essential to guide the planning and management of the impacts resulting from climate changes for the lodging facilities.

5 CONCLUSIONS

This study examined the direct emissions of CO2 in lodging facilities in the municipality of Parnaíba, Piauí, a tourist destination in the northeast of Brazil, part of the outstanding national route Rota das Emoções. The parameters adopted were based on the analytical categories of energy, water, and cooking gas consumption, and on the production of solid waste. The results reported that the main contributor to direct emissions in the accommodation experience was energy consumption, that is, the expenditure made by guests. Other emitters, to a lesser extent, were the generation of waste and the consumption of cooking gas and water, respectively.

It was noted that the characterization of the emissions differs compared to the studies carried out in other global regions. It was possible to conclude that the consumption of the analyzed variables was below the averages found in those studies, thus the emissions were lower than those of accommodation facilities in developed countries. However, it should be highlighted that the per capita emissions were similar to the behavior of domestic visitors in developing countries.

The characterization of the contribution of lodging facilities for local and global CO2 emissions proved to be strategic to compose the overall picture of the emissions and the analysis of the variables that influenced the amount of carbon emitted. Such references must be undertaken to propose mitigation and adaptation actions for the investigated destination.

It is important to reinforce the need for further research in other Brazilian tourist destinations and in the South American region, since in the European and Asian contexts there are already ongoing or concluded studies, that allow us to understand the contribution of the accommodation facilities to the context of global emissions in those continents. In this sense, the present study contributes to filling the gap in the literature reported by authors in the geographic context of South America.

However, it is necessary to expand the analysis to include indirect emissions produced by the hotel sector, which involves studies of hotel purchases, origin of suppliers, etc. In addition, for future studies, it is suggested that guests’ direct emissions be compared with their daily lives emissions to understand whether conscious behavior at home extends to their hotel stays.

APPENDIX A Model of the structured interview applied to managers of the accommodation establishments in the city of Parnaíba (PI).

Date:___________ Interviewer:____________________ Place:_____________________
  1. Time in the hotel industry:_______________

  2. HUs:_________ Beds:_________

  3. Equipment in the HUs:

    Kind of UH Amount Description of the equipment                                    

  4. Number of employees: High Season: __________ Low Season: _________

  5. High season period: ___________________________________________________

  6. Accommodation facilities and services: __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  7. What kind of energy source is used in the establishment? ( ) electrical ( ) wind ( ) solar

    Other: ______________________________________________________________________

  8. How much is the average monthly energy bill? Reals: ______ kWh: _____

    Measurement of energy consumption

    Stay KWh (Start of the stay) KWh (End of the stay) Number of quests 1       2       3       4       5      

  9. Are there any actions taken to reduce energy consumption? ( ) yes ( ) no.

    9.1 If so, what are they?_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  10. How much is the average monthly water bill? Reals: ______ Liters: _____

    Stay KWh (Start of the stay) KWh (End of the stay) Number of quests 1       2       3       4       5      

  11. Are there any actions taken to reduce water consumption? ( ) yes ( ) no.

    1.1 If so, what are they?______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  12. Are there any kind of actions in order to reuse water? ( ) yes ( ) no

    If so, what are they?_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  13. What is the destination of the waste generated? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  14. Is there selective garbage collection? ( ) yes ( ) no

  15. Weight of the waste generated in the establishment:

    Day Weight of the waste (kg) Number of quests 1     2     3     4     5    

  16. What is the destination of the sewage? ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  17. Does the establishment have a restaurant? ( ) yes ( ) no

    If so, how many cooking gas canisters does the establishment consume per month?? Un._______ Kg________

  18. 18.What is the destination of leftover food? Is there any kind of reuse? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

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Edited by

Editor: Glauber Eduardo de Oliveira Santos.

Publication Dates

  • Publication in this collection
    30 Apr 2021
  • Date of issue
    May-Aug 2021

History

  • Received
    05 Mar 2020
  • Accepted
    14 May 2020
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