IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The use of green waste from tourist attractions for renewable energy production: The potential and policy implications


  • Shi, Yan
  • Du, Yuanyuan
  • Yang, Guofu
  • Tang, Yuli
  • Fan, Likun
  • Zhang, Jun
  • Lu, Yijun
  • Ge, Ying
  • Chang, Jie


Quantifying potential renewable energy sources from tourist attractions is a pivotal initial step in developing energy policies and strategies for low-carbon tourist industry development. Although solar energy and wind power have been in use for providing power for tourist attractions, the value of using waste biomass for energy production is still poorly understood. Here we advocate a promising approach that produces energy from green waste created by tourism attractions currently existing in large numbers and is still increasing dramatically. Using the Yangtze River Delta (YRD) of China as an example, we evaluated the potential of utilizing green waste to produce energy from 385 tourist attractions in 16 cities of this region. Our results showed that the total potential energy production using the green waste biomass was estimated at 6740TJ/yr (1TJ=1012J) with an average of 137GJ/ha/yr (1GJ=109J), accounting for 6% (the average of the Yangtze River Delta, some scenic areas up to 93%) of YRD′s tourism industry′s energy consumption in 2008. The use of green waste for energy production is possible using current technology and could result in a win–win approach by reducing waste and increasing the renewable energy yields.

Suggested Citation

  • Shi, Yan & Du, Yuanyuan & Yang, Guofu & Tang, Yuli & Fan, Likun & Zhang, Jun & Lu, Yijun & Ge, Ying & Chang, Jie, 2013. "The use of green waste from tourist attractions for renewable energy production: The potential and policy implications," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 410-418.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:62:y:2013:i:c:p:410-418
    DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2013.07.126

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Crompton, Paul & Wu, Yanrui, 2005. "Energy consumption in China: past trends and future directions," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 195-208, January.
    2. Brennan, Liam & Owende, Philip, 2010. "Biofuels from microalgae--A review of technologies for production, processing, and extractions of biofuels and co-products," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 557-577, February.
    3. Andress, David & Dean Nguyen, T. & Das, Sujit, 2010. "Low-carbon fuel standard--Status and analytic issues," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 580-591, January.
    4. Rogers, Jennifer C. & Simmons, Eunice A. & Convery, Ian & Weatherall, Andrew, 2012. "Social impacts of community renewable energy projects: findings from a woodfuel case study," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 239-247.
    5. Gomi, Kei & Shimada, Kouji & Matsuoka, Yuzuru, 2010. "A low-carbon scenario creation method for a local-scale economy and its application in Kyoto city," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 4783-4796, September.
    6. Kothari, Richa & Tyagi, V.V. & Pathak, Ashish, 2010. "Waste-to-energy: A way from renewable energy sources to sustainable development," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 14(9), pages 3164-3170, December.
    7. Peeters, Paul & Dubois, Ghislain, 2010. "Tourism travel under climate change mitigation constraints," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 447-457.
    8. Zeng, Xianyang & Ma, Yitai & Ma, Lirong, 2007. "Utilization of straw in biomass energy in China," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 11(5), pages 976-987, June.
    9. Osadolor, Odia O., 2009. "Availability of grasses, weeds and leaves as energy resource," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 486-491.
    10. Di Giacomo, G. & Taglieri, L., 2009. "Renewable energy benefits with conversion of woody residues to pellets," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 724-731.
    11. Gössling, Stefan, 2013. "National emissions from tourism: An overlooked policy challenge?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 433-442.
    12. Shi, Yan & Ge, Ying & Chang, Jie & Shao, Hongbo & Tang, Yuli, 2013. "Garden waste biomass for renewable and sustainable energy production in China: Potential, challenges and development," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 22(C), pages 432-437.
    13. Nizami, Abdul-Sattar & Murphy, Jerry D., 2010. "What type of digester configurations should be employed to produce biomethane from grass silage?," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 14(6), pages 1558-1568, August.
    14. Tsagarakis, Konstantinos P. & Bounialetou, Fanouria & Gillas, Konstantinos & Profylienou, Maroulitsa & Pollaki, Antrianna & Zografakis, Nikolaos, 2011. "Tourists' attitudes for selecting accommodation with investments in renewable energy and energy saving systems," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 1335-1342, February.
    15. Aguilar, Francisco X., 2009. "Investment preferences for wood-based energy initiatives in the US," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 2292-2299, June.
    16. Moloney, Susie & Horne, Ralph E. & Fien, John, 2010. "Transitioning to low carbon communities--from behaviour change to systemic change: Lessons from Australia," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(12), pages 7614-7623, December.
    17. Kostakis, I. & Sardianou, E., 2012. "Which factors affect the willingness of tourists to pay for renewable energy?," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 169-172.
    18. Xu, Jiuping & Yao, Liming & Mo, Liwen, 2011. "Simulation of low-carbon tourism in world natural and cultural heritage areas: An application to Shizhong District of Leshan City in China," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 4298-4307, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Lingling Chen & Brijesh Thapa & Wei Yan, 2018. "The Relationship between Tourism, Carbon Dioxide Emissions, and Economic Growth in the Yangtze River Delta, China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(7), pages 1-20, June.
    2. Fátima Calderón-Vargas & David Asmat-Campos & Anselmo Carretero-Gómez, 2019. "Sustainable Tourism and Renewable Energy: Binomial for Local Development in Cocachimba, Amazonas, Peru," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(18), pages 1-21, September.
    3. Navratil, J. & Picha, K. & Buchecker, M. & Martinat, S. & Svec, R. & Brezinova, M. & Knotek, J., 2019. "Visitors’ preferences of renewable energy options in “green” hotels," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 138(C), pages 1065-1077.
    4. He, Qi & Jiang, Xujia & Gouldson, Andy & Sudmant, Andrew & Guan, Dabo & Colenbrander, Sarah & Xue, Tao & Zheng, Bo & Zhang, Qiang, 2016. "Climate change mitigation in Chinese megacities: A measures-based analysis of opportunities in the residential sector," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 184(C), pages 769-778.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:62:y:2013:i:c:p:410-418. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Haili He). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.