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Life cycle assessment to address the environmental impacts of tourism in a Spanish tourist destination: The case of Rias Baixas (Galicia) holidays

Abstract: Tourism has grown steadily in recent decades, becoming a strategic sector for the economy in many countries. However, the environmental impacts associated with tourism have also experienced an upward trend. In this sense, innovation is needed in the tourism sector, to move towards new models and strategies that integrate environmental sustainability with the social aspects of the sector. In this study, a holistic assessment of the environmental impact of tourism has been carried out using the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method, considering all stages of tourism activity: transportation from the place of origin to destination and back, accommodation, catering, and activities conducted. For this purpose, a case study has been carried out based on a typical trip made from Madrid to Rías Baixas (Galicia), considering a four-night stay and the performance of two activities (music festival and cultural museum) at the destination. Two alternative transportation scenarios (train or plane) have been defined to analyze the influence of the type of transportation on the overall impact. Other touristic activities such as visiting gardens or thermal baths instead of visiting a cultural museum or attending a music festival have been analyzed and it has been found that the thermal baths and the museum have the greatest environmental impacts. Transportation was the biggest contributor to most of the environmental impacts in the selected categories. On the other hand, the stay at the destination has stood out due to the impact of the consumption of food and energy used at the accommodation facility. The impact of the activities conducted at the destination is also worth highlighting. Finally, alternative scenarios for transportation have shown that the mode of transportation selected is key for lowering the overall environmental impact of the stay at the destination, highlighting the public transportation alternative, such as the train, as the most environmentally friendly option.

Otras publicaciones de la misma revista o congreso con autores/as de la Universidad de Cantabria

 Autoría: Campos C., Gallego M., Villanueva P., Laso J., Dias A.C., Quinteiro P., Oliveira S., Albertí J., Fullana-i-Palmer P., Mélon L., Sazdovski I., Roca M., Xifré R., Margallo M., Aldaco R.,

 Fuente: Science of the Total Environment, 2023, 896, 166242

Editorial: Elsevier

 Fecha de publicación: 20/10/2023

Nº de páginas: 11

Tipo de publicación: Artículo de Revista

 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2023.166242

ISSN: 0048-9697,1879-1026

Proyecto europeo: info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/EC/SUDOE/SOE3%2FP3%2Feo865/ SUDOE efficient energy for public social housing/GREENTOUR/

Url de la publicación: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2023.166242

Autores/as

CRISTINA CAMPOS HERRERO

GALLEGO FERNÁNDEZ, MARÍA

PEDRO VILLANUEVA REY

ANA CLAUDIA DIAS

QUINTEIRO, PAULA SOFIA GIL NETO

OLIVEIRA, SARA

ALBERTÍ BUENO, JAUME

PERE FULLANA I PALMER

MÉLON, LELA

SAZDOVSKI, ILIJA

ROCA, MERCÈ

XIFRÉ OLIVA, RAMÓN