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Mr Pololikashvili presenting at a conference in Asturias, Spain / Credit: Green Matters

On January 1, 2018, Mr. Zurab Pololikashvili took over as Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the United Nations agency responsible for promoting responsible, sustainable, and universally accessible tourism.

GM: Many tourism professionals see sustainable tourism as necessary for the survival of the planet. Can sustainable tourism really make a difference?

ZP: While tourism brings socioeconomic development and inclusive growth to millions of people worldwide, its mismanaged expansion can put fragile environments at risk, deplete natural resources, and disrupt the social structures and cultural values of host communities – the very elements that tourism greatly depends on.

Sustainability is therefore tourism’s fundamental challenge and should be regarded as a comprehensive condition of the sector as a whole. This entails meeting the rising demands of today’s tourists while safeguarding the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of destinations and communities worldwide.

Read the full interview with Zurab Pololikashvili here.

By Ethan Gelber for Green Matters

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Ten countries that protect their environment and respect human rights

Chile_made the list of the ten most ethical travel destinations for 2017

Chile made the list of the ten most ethical travel destinations for 2017, in part due to its expanding solar industry in places like the Atacama Desert, pictured above. Photo credit: Danielle Pereira / Flickr

Travel is more than an opening for good will, writes Ethical Traveller. It is one of the world’s most powerful economic engines, and can drive the way countries treat their citizens, indigenous peoples, wildlife and the environment. Travel is the world’s largest industry, with a trillion-dollar annual footprint. This means that travelers have enormous power. Where we put our footprints has reverberations reaching far beyond our personal experience. By “voting with our wings” – choosing our destinations well and cultivating our roles as citizen diplomats – we can help to change the world for the better.

Every year, Ethical Traveler reviews the policies and practices of over one hundred developing nations. We then select the ten that are doing the most impressive job of promoting human rights, preserving the environment and supporting social welfare – all while creating a lively, community-based tourism industry. By visiting these countries, we can use our economic leverage to reward good works and support best practices.

 


The Winners
Ethical Traveler congratulates the countries on our 2017 list of The World’s Ten Best Ethical Destinations. The winners, in alphabetical order (not in order of merit), are:

  • Belize
  • Cabo Verde
  • Chile
  • Costa Rica
  • Dominica
  • Mongolia
  • Palau
  • Tonga
  • Uruguay
  • Vanuatu

By Ethical Traveller. Find out how the list is created – click here to read the original article.

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ioannis-pappas-gstc-conferennce-athens-2016

Dr Ioannis Pappas, CEO of Green Evolution SA, Member of the Board and Country Representative of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, is an experienced professional engineer, with over 25 years of work in several fields of science, focusing on sustainability for tourism, energy and environmental efficiency in infrastructure and buildings, auditing or advising in standardization of companies and technological implementation of climate adaptation and mitigation methodologies.

His company, Green Evolution S.A. is an advisory company in the fields of environment, energy and carbon finance. With respect to sustainable tourism in particular they assist interested entities to implement sustainable tourism through consulting, training and functional support, in the design, management and implementation of tourism projects with sustainability in order to create long term benefits for destinations and local communities

In this interview Ioannis Pappas speaks with Anula Galewska about challenges of tourism development in Greece and reviews the sustainability efforts of the Greek tourism industry.

This article is part of the interview series with Speakers of the GSTC Conferences in Suwon, Korea and Athens, Greece held in October and November 2016.

 


GSTC’s Regional European Meeting took place in Athens, Greece in November 2016. To view presentations from the past conference and learn about upcoming GSTC events, visit GSTC website.

Click here to read more on the original article by Travindy.

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wtm-2014_030Photo: news.wtmlondon.com

At WTM London this year we ran 25 events over the three days. It was the 10th anniversary of World Responsible Tourism Day and there were two brief films for the opening. The first looked back over the 10 years and the second looking forward at the major challenges.

The challenge of overtourism came up in many of the sessions, there is increasing concern that in a significant number  of destinations we are running up against the environmental and socio-economic limits to growth – there will be several panels on this at WTM London in 2017. One of the outcomes of the conversations on the Responsible Tourism Stand this year was an agreement amongst a number of destinations in Europe and Asia to work together and share ideas about how to tackle the challenge. By Harold Goodwin. Read more.

 

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Top 100 Sustainable Destinations for 2016

Categories: Recommended Reading, Uncategorized
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top 100 greendesttop100Green Destinations unveiled the “Top 100 Sustainable Destinations” in the world for 2016 during World Tourism Day on 27 September 2016. According to the organisation, “The Top 100 initiative aims to recognise tourism destinations that have worked hard to make a difference and take sustainability seriously.”

Over 150 destinations were submitted, which were then reviewed by thirty evaluators and a selection panel led by Albert Salman (Green Destinations), Jonathan Tourtellot (Destination Stewardship Center), Masaru Takayama (Asian Ecotourism
Network), Brian Mullis (Sustainable Travel International), and Randy Durban (Global Sustainable Tourism Council).

bhutantimorleste

The nominees were judged against the Green Destinations’ fifteen core criteria:

  • Sustainability Coordinator
  • Sustainable Tourism Policy
  • Nature Protection
  • Respect for Animals
  • Protection of Landscape and Scenery
  • Waste Water Treatment
  • Solid Waste Reduction
  • Reduction of fossil fuel dependency
  • Cultural Heritage Conservation
  • Protection of Intangible Heritage
  • Protection of People
  • Inhabitants Involved in Tourism
  • Promoting Local Products
  • Health and Safety Prevention
  • Accessibility for Disabled

top100

top 100 korchithai

Twenty destinations in eleven Asia-Pacific countries made the Top 100:

  • Kingdom of Bhutan
  • Timor Leste – Atauro Island
  • Taiwan – Northeast and Yilan Coast & Chihalaahay Cultural Landscape Area
  • Philippines – Lake Holon, Lake Sebu, and Boho, Aloguinsan
  • Indonesia – Plataran L’Harmonie and Misool, Raja Ampat
  • Republic of Korea – Dongbaekdongsan and Suncheon Bay Wetland
  • China – Jiuzhaigoiu Scenic Area, Mt. Huangshan, Sanqingshan World Heritage Site, and Yi Xian
  • Thailand – Tung Dap Village
  • India – Parambikulam Tiger Reserve and Khangchendzonga National Park
  • Tajikistan – Pamir Mountains
  • Republic of Palau  

See the whole “Top 100 Sustainable Destinations” list here.

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Bangkok, 11 March, 2015 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Los Angeles and New York Offices are lending their support to the filming of Ocean Mysteries, a television show from US broadcasting corporation ABC, as they come to shoot a documentary about Thailand’s environmental conservation and marine environments during February and March this year. Read more.

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This report presents findings of a three-year research project undertaken to determine what regional tourism stakeholders have learnt from practice, and what they consider to have contributed to best practice, for the sustainable planning, management, development and marketing of regional tourism destinations in Australia.

by Meredith Wray, Dianne Dredge, Carmen Cox, Jeremy Buultjens, Mary Hollick, Diane Lee, Michael Pearlman, Carol Lacroix

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This book presents research into the relationship between self-drive transport and tourism development. It is particularly useful for tourism managers and planners as it provides perspectives and case studies on self-drive tourism in regional Australia, delivering a better understanding of the variety of tourism markets, which use self-drive transport.

by Dean Carson, Iain Waller and Noel Scott

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Drive Tourism: Up the Wall and Around the Bend

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The assessment tool (phase 2) provides readers with tools, exercises and interrogating questions to better understand tourism management issues in their local destination. this is achieved through the presentation of activities and questions and through the inclusion of vignettes and stories of practice that may inspire alternative approaches to tourism management.

by Dianne Dredge, Jim Macbeth, Dean Carson, Narelle Beaumont, Jeremy Northcote, and Fiona Richards
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Mapping Spatial Attributes for Conservation and Tourism Planning, Otways Region Victoria: Survey of Residents and Visitors

Categories: Management, Monitoring & Evaluation, Oceania, Pacific, Residents, Survey, Visitors
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The project was undertaken to better understand resident and visitor preferences for conservation and tourism development in the Otways region of Victoria, Australia. The project used a survey technique where participants were asked to map place-specific landscape values and development preferences with the goal of identifying  priority areas for conservation, development and resource management in the region. Two survey instruments were developed for the study – one for Otway residents and one for visitors to the region.

by Greg Brown and Chris Raymond

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Mapping Spatial Attributes for Conservation and Tourism Planning, Otways Region Victoria: Survey of Residents and Visitors

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