Systematic process of waste management for sustainable operations of hotel industry
Hotel industry contributes to Gross Domestic Product of Sri Lanka by 12.5% (2018) which is a considerable value. Hotel industry contributes for a considerable amount of daily wastes since there are number of hotel networks which are spread throughout the country. Determining the sustainability adaptation of the Sri Lankan hotel industry is crucial since there is not a strict legal background that specifically governs the hotel industry waste, except for a few regulations related to tourism. Addressing gaps in between such requirements and waste management systems in hotels from the perspective of the Circular Economy concept, this research identifies match making opportunities for hotel industry waste. This ensures that waste is not thrown away and is used in the production process of other goods or providing services. Although many studies on the concept of CE have been carried out globally, it is a novel topic in the Sri Lankan context. Further, research that adapted the CE concept for managing hotel industry waste is scarce. This research therefore investigates on applying the CE concept for managing hotel sector waste by analyzing, the 6R principles associated with the CE concept, the waste match making process and its cost implications. A case study strategy with semi structured interviews as the data collection tool was used in the study. Case studies were preceded by a brief pilot study to set the context for the main study. Manual content analysis method was used for analyzing the collected data. Through the research findings, it was revealed that the possibility of adapting waste exchanging program for hotel industry mainly depends on the category and the location of the hotel. Even though the barriers exist, those can be mitigated through proper vendor selection and waste match making. This research identified possible waste matches, pros and cons of such matches and the enablers, barriers and favorable outcomes of such match making exercises.
Keywords: Sustainability, Circular Economy (CE), Waste exchanging, Match making, Hotel industry