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Pack in, pack out

 

Make sure you don’t leave any trash behind when doing a jungle hike. Food and drink cartons are common items to remember cleaning up but smaller things, such as cigarette butts, toilet paper and food leftovers are often overlooked and can still have a big impact on nature. Food litter can harm animals but also attract them. Make sure you bring food and drinks in reusable containers to avoid littering. Boy Scouts of America has a great article about the proper disposal of waste.

 

Nature and wildlife conservation

 

Be an observer of nature and take in its beauty in from a distance. Avoid walking off-track and don’t pick flowers or remove rocks as this might have more impact on nature than you think. Even though it is tempting to get closer to wild animals such as orangutans and other primates, keep your distance and admire them from afar. It can be dangerous for both humans and animals.

 

Respect local ways and culture

 

When jungle trekking in tropical countries, it can be very hot and humid. Even so, avoid going trekking wearing minimal clothing as this can be very inappropriate in some cultures and local communities, especially when visiting holy places, such as temples. Remember to always ask locals first if you want to take a picture of them and avoid giving gifts to poorer residents as this can encourage begging. Make sure you are well informed about local ways and culture before you go hiking (or before you go to a foreign country in general).

Support the local community

 

Book your jungle trek with a local tour operator and with local guides. This method of touring is win-win because you will support the local community, and because locals have the best knowledge and the best stories about the area you are visiting. Hire local porters, but make sure they are not carrying too much because often they carry almost as much as their body weight up the hills. Also, consider combining your jungle trekking with a community-based tourism experience! When you get to the villages, buy local souvenirs but avoid giving them too much money for it as this can do more harm than good.  

 

Spread the word –  share your knowledge

 

Education is key, share your sustainable experiences with other travellers and friends and in turn you can learn from others.  Express your concern at tour operators and travel companies as the more people that are concerned with environmental issues, the more tour operators will adopt eco-friendly and sustainable practices.

 

For more ideas on responsible camping, check out this Green Tip.

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The clan jetties have been overwhelmed by tourists since receiving Unesco world heritage status. Photograph: gracethang/Getty Images

 

The gambling-ridden clan jetties of Malaysia’s George Town were saved from ruin by the award of Unesco world heritage status, but their new fame left locals overwhelmed by a tide of invasive tourism. Can we ever get the balance right?

Chew Jetty in Malaysia’s George Town attracts tourists by the boatload. Historic homes are now commercial stalls branded with neon signs; one-time fishermen peddle T-shirts, magnets and postcards. Tour buses deposit vacationers from early in the morning until well after sunset.

 

The daily intrusion has clearly taken a toll: windows are boarded, “no photo” signs are pervasive, and tenants quickly vanish at the sight of a foreign face.

 

“I would like to remind people that we are not monkeys, and this is not a zoo,” says Lee Kah Lei, who runs a souvenir stall outside her home on the Chew Jetty.

 

Read the full article about the struggle to strike the balance between the economic benefits of catering to visitors and preserving the culture that drew the recognition.

 

By Laignee Barron for The Guardian.

 

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Credit: Eco Warrior Princess

 

As environmental awareness grows, so does the number of phrases used to describe ‘green’ consumer choices. With everything from ‘biodegradable’ to ‘biodynamic’, the sheer amount of jargon can get more than a little confusing.

This is particularly true of the travel industry, where ‘ecotourism’ and ‘sustainable tourism’ are often used interchangeably. But is this accurate?

 

Travel is a fairly big deal. Billions of people travel internationally every year, and the industry is only predicted to grow in years to come. What’s encouraging is to see that as we become increasingly environmentally conscious, we’re moving towards a global landscape where more and more people make green travel choices. But with so many different environmentally friendly travel options available, and a lot of terminology to sift through, things can get a little muddled.

 

Read the full article to learn about the difference between Ecotourism and Sustainable Travel. 

 

By James Hale for Eco Warrior Princess. 

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A sustainable trip starts at home. When preparing for your next trip, keep these basic travel tips in mind.

 

Flying

Pay attention to your carbon footprint when booking your flight. Some airlines emit more carbon dioxide than others. It’s possible for you to pay a little more to ‘offset’ the carbon dioxide or simply select the trip with the shortest flight time. The less time spent in the air improves your personal contribution to a cleaner environment.  

 

Pack light

Only pack the essentials. Do you really need that extra pair of shoes? More weight means more carbon emissions – and possible excess baggage charges that hit you where it really hurts.

 

Travel closer to home

Remember that there are places closer to home that are just as beautiful and interesting. Staying local benefits your local community and environment. Travelling by train or bus instead of a plane means you are emitting up to 50 percent less carbon dioxide in some cases.

 

Accommodation

Check for evidence of sustainability or eco-certification when making your reservation(s). When hotels or resorts have a proven track record in terms of environmental care and eco-management they will likely promote these features to catch your eye.

Here is a link to help you find some green hotels.

 

Products

Take your own toiletries and avoid using the in-room shampoos and shower gels provided in miniature plastic containers.

Some sunscreens may be harmful to people and the planet.

 

EQ offers organic lifestyle products including sunscreen that are respectful to marine life.

 

Smart Girls Who Surf  offers a line of sunscreen products for body, face and lips. Take your own reusable products, such as bags, tumblers and even chopsticks.

 

Read more about being a responsible traveller in the PATA s Responsible Business Travel Guidelines.

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In April of this year, the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii recorded its first-ever carbon dioxide reading over 410 parts per million (ppm). This is a brand-new state of affairs, as humans have never existed on Earth with CO2 levels over 300 ppm. If carbon emissions continue their current trend, our atmosphere could get to a point it hasn’t been at in 50 million years—when temperatures were 18°F (10°C) higher and there was almost no ice on the planet (meaning there was a lot more water and a lot less land).

There’s long been a consensus between multiple countries to try to limit the temperature change from global warming to two degrees Celsius. This is critical for many reasons, not least the effect hotter temperatures will have (and have already had) on food production.

But author and activist Paul Hawken says two degrees isn’t enough—not nearly enough, in fact. In a moving presentation at Singularity University’s Global Summit last week in San Francisco, Hawken shared details from his recently-released book Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming.

 

Read the full article here and be surprised by at least one of the top solutions from Drawdown’s model.

 

By Vanessa Bates Ramirez for SingularityHub

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How much trickles down to her? RACHELE CARETTI/FLICKR, CC BY-SA

 

Wouldn’t it be great if something as simple and pleasurable as international travel could help end something as grinding and enduring as global poverty? After all, the industry is booming, growing at least 4 percent a year since the 1960s (with a brief slowdown in 2009), according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

In 2016, over 1.3 billion international tourists spent an estimated U.S. $1.4 trillion. That’s the equivalent of Australia’s gross domestic product, dispersed around the world.

The UN has even declared 2017 the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, heralding the role of international travel in reducing poverty. But how much global tourism money really makes its way to poor countries?

Read it here. 

By Susanne Becken, Griffith University at Huffington Post.

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A view of Singularity University’s 2017 Global Summit held in San Francisco, California. Photo by: Catherine Cheney / Devex

 

While large organizations are designed for efficiency and predictability, they would benefit from flexibility and adaptability, Salim Ismail, author of “Exponential Organizations,” said onstage on the final day of the summit. He pointed to the United Nations as one example of an old institution that lacks feedback loops and update mechanisms to keep up with current trends. Representatives of traditional donor agencies and nongovernmental organizations were few and far between at a summit that gathered leaders to explore how converging technologies are transforming every industry, including foreign aid, global health and humanitarian response.

But Devex was on the ground to gather key insights for the global development community on how this kind of thinking can support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

 

Read the full article here about the idea to connect the dots between emerging technology, recycling and global poverty

 

By Catherine Cheney from Devex. 

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From New York’s High Line park to new affordable housing in Oakland, a debate over the accessibility of green design has taken root. Credit: Shutterstock/Stuart Monk

 

In East Oakland, a few blocks from the home of the champion Golden State Warriors basketball team, a series of geometric buildings and well-tended green spaces cut a striking contrast to the overgrown vacant lots, industrial equipment yards and aging corner stores that dot the neighborhood.

Tassafaronga Village, a six-year-old, $52.8 million LEED Gold housing redevelopment project, is also an example of the tradeoffs that can emerge in the push to make cities more sustainable — not just environmentally, but also socially and economically.

From Miami to New York, Houston to Oakland, the term “climate gentrification” is on the rise.

 

Learn about climate gentrification here:

 

By Lauren Hepler on GreenBiz

 

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First Venice and Barcelona: now anti-tourism marches spread across Europe

Categories: Europe, People and Places, Recommended Reading
Comments Off on First Venice and Barcelona: now anti-tourism marches spread across Europe

Cruise ship visitors on the streets of Dubrovnik, where cameras now monitor the numbers of people in the old town. Photograph: muckylucky/Guardian Witness

 

Demos in San Sebastián and crackdowns in Rome and Dubrovnik as locals vent frustration at city-breakers and cruise ships

With the continent sweltering under a heatwave nicknamed Lucifer, tempers have been boiling over, too, as a wave of anti-tourism protests take place in some of Europe’s most popular destinations. Yet, as “tourism-phobia” becomes a feature of the summer, the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) has defended the sector, calling on local authorities to do more to manage growth in a sustainable manner.

Read here about what caused the anti-tourism marches in Europe.

 

 

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Rising demand for Thai organic goods in both local and export markets has prompted the government to pursue a range of initiatives aimed at encouraging organic farming practices.

 

The state is launching a new programme to promote organic agriculture by encouraging a reduction in the amount of new rice planting, and a shift from commercial varieties to organic strains …

Read more here. 

 

By Oxford Business Group

 

 

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