Author(s): Emma Rachel Whittlesea & Anne Owen
In: Journal of Sustainable Tourism
iFirst 2012, 1–21
Type: Journal article
Link to SEI author(s):
Towards a low carbon future – the development and application of REAP Tourism, a destination footprint and scenario tool
This paper explores the development and application of a bespoke modelling and scenario tool, REAP Tourism, to quantify the full greenhouse gas (CO2e) footprint associated with visitor activity and consumption.
Designed for use by destination decision-makers, it helps understand the full CO2e impact of visitors, explores potential mitigation strategies and identifies emissions reduction possibilities. REAP Tourism can calculate direct and indirect supply chain emissions related to accommodation, travel, food, shopping, services, attractions, activities and events.
This paper demonstrates the tool at a range of different geographic levels in South West England. Initial results show overseas visitors to have an impact of 196 kg CO2e per day, domestic overnight visitors having 49 kg and day visitors 48 kg. Further exploration shows the tool's ability to show the impact of different marketing/development scenarios on CO2e emissions including holidaying locally strategies, encouraging longer stays, buying local goods and encouraging low meat diets. Comparisons show that luxury weekend visitors have five times the daily impact of family holiday visitors and ten times those of back-packers. The strengths and weaknesses of the tool's methodologies and its range of outputs able to inform tourism policy and decision-making are discussed.
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