Skip to main content

Roadmap for Low Carbon and Resource Efficient Accommodation in the Dominican Republic

  • Published on November 18, 2021
The Dominican tourism sector is mainly concentrated on
the coasts of the country and that is why it has also actively
joined the actions proposed in the project ‘Transforming
tourism value chains in developing countries and Small
Island Developing States to accelerate more resource
efficient, and low carbon development’.
Available in Spanish here.
Authors: Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP), UNEP DTU Partnership, Environment Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of the Dominican Republic and The Association of Hotels Owners and Condos Playa Dorada Inc.
This is a roadmap to a sustainable and resilient
tourism accommodation sector in the Dominican
Republic. It will help the tourism sector to become
a guardian of the natural beauty of the country,
on which it relies, and showcase the hospitality of its people,
their diversity, and their culture.

The roadmap is based on an analysis of the tourism value
chain, meaning not only the activities that happen within the
hotels and restaurants, but also including all the activities
that supply them with energy and materials; for example
those that produce the food, and the waste that is created
in the process. A notable exclusion from the analysis is
international travel.

The analysis revealed that many environmental impacts
related to tourism happen outside hotels; for example, 57%
of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are associated with
food served by the hotels, as is most of the water used.
Inside the hotels, energy used in cooling and air-conditioning
is the most significant source of GHG emissions.
The roadmap sets five targets for the accommodation
sector in the Dominican Republic:

1. 25% GHG emissions reduction
2. 50% food waste reduction
3. 25% reduction of non-renewable energy use
4. Complete removal of problematic single-use plastics
5. Sustainability certifications for hotels

The headline target is to reduce the GHG emissions
associated with hotels by 25 % by 2030 from 2020 baseline.
The other four 2030 targets support the delivery of the GHG
emissions target, in line with identified hotspots and the UN
Sustainable Development Goals.

To deliver these targets, the roadmap proposes 3 systemic

1. Beat pollution
To reduce marine and land-based pollution and reduce the
consumption of materials and waste arising from tourism.
This includes: putting in place the mechanisms for hotels to
collect environmental data relating to environmental permits
and sustainable hotel certification schemes, eliminating
problematic single use plastics in products and packaging
by procuring more sustainable alternatives, enforcing and
enhancing regulatory frameworks, looking at the role of
financial incentives in reducing pollution and introducing
innovation (e.g. to replace single use plastics), improving
waste management and recycling systems. This should all be
driven forward and underpinned by a nationwide uptake of
best-practice sustainability certification for hotels.

2. Sustainable gastronomy
The second systemic solution will start by measuring and
reducing food waste in hotels, introducing the concept
of sustainable gastronomy by training chefs and hotel
managers on the topics of food sustainability, encouraging
the adoption of sustainable procurement practices when
buying food, and sustainable dining.

3. Sustainable energy
The third systemic solution aims to increase energyefficiency and the use of renewable energy in hotels.
This includes the establishment of government policies
and financial measures to support and incentivise the
use of energy-efficient equipment and renewable energy
technologies; the establishment of regulatory framework,
including standards and certification schemes (such as
energy audits and rating schemes); the identification of
energy-efficient products and services available on the
market to encourage the procurement of energy-efficient
equipment by tourism businesses, and the implementation
of training and awareness- raising programmes in energy
management and renewable energy.

This will, in turn, require tourism businesses and their value
chains, supporting trade bodies and government ministries,
departments and agencies to join hands in developing an
implementation plan to support transforming the tourism
sector to more sustainable operations.

You might also be Interested in