Sustainable tourism: why is it so necessary?
The holidays are upon us and with them, the desire to travel. According to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), in 2022 more than 900 million people travelled internationally. This large movement of tourists brings with it a series of advantages such as job creation, an increase in foreign currency, the development of infrastructures, the exchange of cultures, the preservation of heritage, among others.
However, it is also true that tourism can have negative consequences for the environment. Tourism generates a large amount of waste and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, largely due to the energy consumption of tourist facilities and means of transport.
Environmental impact of tourism
In the same way that private households generate CO2 emissions from energy use on a daily basis, tourist accommodation also depends on electricity and energy consumption in kWh to maintain the facilities in optimal conditions. Specifically, hotels produce about 274 Mt (megatonnes) of CO2 emissions every night.
Translated to the individual level, it is estimated that each tourist emits 10-102 kilograms of CO2 per night of stay. As a result, more and more hotels are joining the plan for sustainable tourism, implementing measures to reduce their carbon footprint and seeking to save electricity and water in order to preserve the ecosystem and their own resources.