Status of environmental education in waste management for the Zambian hospitality industry : The case of Lusaka Urban
Moonga, Mirriam Sampa
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In a country with a rapid population growth rate and huge inflow of tourists such as was the case with Zambia, in the year 2007 environmental issues needed to be checked and monitored closely. One such environmental issue needing attention at the time of writing in 2007 was Waste Management. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to explore the role of Environmental Education in Waste Management for the Zambian Hospitality Industry of Lusaka urban.The main research question investigated by the study was whether there was EE provided in waste management for the Zambian hospitality industry of Lusaka urban.Specific research questions included the following: • What kind of EE on waste management was provided to the hospitality industry? • Who provided EE on waste management to the hospitality industry? • What were the views of the hospitality industry regarding the type of EE on waste management?The study used a survey design, supported by quantitative and qualitative data. A sample total of 25 respondents were randomly selected and this included 10 hotels, 10 lodges and 5 officers. The five officers involved two from Lusaka City Council and three from the Environmental Council of Zambia Waste Management Units. Data was collected using questionnaires, semi structured interviews and physical observations. Quantitative data collected was analysed using simple frequency distribution tables and percentages, while qualitative data from interviews and observations were analyzed qualitatively by coding and grouping similar themes using constant comparative techniques. Tables and charts were used in the presentation of data after analysis.The main finding of the study was that there was no Environmental Education (EE) in waste management as such provided to the hospitality industry in Zambia but that there were institutions in Zambia which claimed to offer Environmental Education programmes on waste management to the hospitality industry. These included Local Authorities like the Lusaka City Council (LCC) and the Environmental Council of Zambia (ECZ). The Lusaka City Council managed waste through its Franchise Companies contracted to help it in the management of waste in Lusaka urban. Each Franchise company had been allocated an operational district while LCC itself had remained with the Centre of the city. The study further discovered that there was a small amount of waste management which was being done at in-house level in very few institutions. The study revealed that institutions responsible for the provision of EE to the hospitality industry had no specific or designed waste management EE curriculum for the hospitality industry. Instead, they offered a general sensitization program to the entire community, which did not meet the EE requirements of the hospitality industry. As a result of such generality, most of the hotel/lodge staff knew very little or nothing at all about professional issues of waste management. Hence, the poor waste management practices being practiced by the hospitality industry could be attributed partly to the lack of an EE policy in the industry.The main conclusion of the study was that there was EE provided to the hospitality industry in Zambia. However, the EE which was provided was general in nature and was not specifically directed to the needs of the hospitality industry. The study, therefore, recommends that institutions responsible for the provision the hospitality industry should design EE programmes tailored specifically to meet the needs of the hospitality industry, establish more institutions which are specialized in waste management as well as increase the number of EE providers in order to ensure effective communication, networking and monitoring within the hospitality industry.Other recommendations are that EE providers should come from within the hospitality industry in order to effectively provide EE to the hospitality industry.
- Education