ABSTRACT: This paper improves short-term forecasting models of monthly tourism arrivals by estimating and evaluating a time-series model with exogenous regressors (ARIMA-X) using a case of Aruba, a small open tourism-dependent economy. Given importance of the US market for Aruba, it investigates informational value of Google Searches originating in the USA, flight capacity utilization on the US air-carriers, and per capita demand of the US consumers, given the volatility index in stock markets (VIX). It yields several insights. First, flight capacity is the best variable to account for the travel restrictions during the pandemic. Second, US real personal consumption expenditure becomes a more significant predictor than income as the former better captured impact of the COVID-19 restrictions on the consumers’ behavior, while income boosted by the pandemic fiscal support was not fully directed to spending. Third, intercept correction improves the model in the estimation period. Finally, the pandemic changed econometric relationships between the tourism arrivals and their main determinants, and accuracy of the forecast models. Going forward, the analysts should re-estimate the models. Out-of-sample forecasts with 5 percent confidence intervals are produced for 18 months ahead.
Resource recovery and reuse from domestic wastewater has become an important subject for the current development of sanitation technologies and infrastructures. Different technologies are available and combined into sanitation concepts, with different performances. This study provides a methodological approach to evaluate the sustainability of these sanitation concepts with focus on resource recovery and reuse. St. Eustatius, a small tropical island in the Caribbean, was used as a case study for the evaluation. Three source separation-communityon-site and two combined sewerage island-scale concepts were selected and compared in terms of environmental (net energy use, nutrient recovery/reuse, BOD/COD, pathogens, and GHG emission, land use), economic (CAPEX and OPEX), social cultural (acceptance, required competences and education), and technological (flexibility/adaptability, reliability/continuity of service) indicators. The best performing concept, is the application of Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Bed (UASB) and Trickling Filter (TF) at island level for combined domestic wastewater treatment with subsequent reuse in agriculture. Its overall average normalised score across the four categories (i.e., average of average per category) is about 15% (0.85) higher than the values of the remaining systems and with a score of 0.73 (conventional activated sludge – centralised level), 0.77 (UASB-septic tank (ST)), 0.76 (UASB-TF - community level), and 0.75 (ST - household level). The higher score of the UASB-TF at community
level is mainly due to much better performance in the environmental and economic categories. In conclusion, the case study provides a methodological approach that can support urban planning and decision-making in selecting more sustainable sanitation concepts, allowing resource recovery and reuse in small island context or in other contexts.
With the concept of "build back better", the United Nations emphasizes the importance of the recovery phase following a natural hazard as an opportunity to implement vulnerability reduction measures. This work here focuses on the ongoing recovery of the French part of island of St. Martin following hurricanes Irma in September 2017. The recovery of this semi-autonomous territory is a major challenge for the local authorities and for the French State. The current state of post-disaster recovery shows the difficulties of reconciling the two imperatives of "rebuild faster" and "rebuild better", in a context of social, political and media pressure. Therefore, what conditions would be necessary to take advantage of this key moment and make the small island more resilient to a new event? What do we learn from this experience for the management of the recovery?