Responsible Tourism News – New Year 2015

Professional Masters in Responsible Tourism

This is the new format of Responsible Tourism News published at the end of each month, a newsletter of record carrying the 10 most important stories of the month. Please forward to those you think may be interested – you can subscribe  here. If you wish to contribute a story email Harold(at)HaroldGoodwin.info or post it on our RTNews Facebook page.

1. Responsible Tourism in 2015

Responsible Tourism is about making better places for people to live in and better places for people to visit, in that order. Interesting and enjoyable places to live in are great places to visit. The challenge of Responsible Tourism is to use tourism for sustainable development. The key question to ask is whether the place is being used by tourism, or whether the local community is using tourism? Responsible Tourism starts from the assumption that the place, and its natural and cultural heritage, has value for local people and the visitors. Responsible Tourism values and celebrates diversity, it recognises that places are different, that they have particular natural and cultural heritage, a product of their geography and history and the way in which people have lived in different places over hundreds of years. Responsible Tourism and sustainable tourism are not the same thing. Responsible Tourism places the emphasis on identifying the particular local issues of sustainability, the things which matter locally and which tourism can do something about. It is about businesses, in the destination and the source markets, local communities and their local authorities tackling those issues, agreeing priorities and then each stakeholder shouldering their responsibility to make tourism better.

Sustainable tourism is the aspiration, the exercise of responsibility is about how the rather vague aspiration of sustainability is achieved. Sustainable tourism, like sustainability, defies definition. Transparency is a key part of a Responsible Tourism approach which starts with an analysis of the local situation identifying the issues, the problems, which affect local communities and their environment. It is about identifying the local priorities where tourism can make a contribution to improving the situation. read more

In 2015 there are three International Conferences on Responsible Tourism in Destinations each designed to provide participants with an opportunity to explore the issues in a particular part of the world and to discuss how best to address the local issues drawing on international experience,

RTD9 Dublin 11th March the theme is Achieving Change The 2015 Irish Responsible Tourism Awards will be presented after the conference. More details the conference here and awards here. Book now

RTD10 Caliva, Mallorca 26th-27th March We’ll be looking back at 50 years of mass tourism and at the first resort destination regeneration initiative in Mallorca in the 1990s as well as the contemporary issues and looking to the future – cruise tourism, marketing, sustainability and the northern Mediterranean, confirmed speakers include Jane Ashton (TUI), Tim Williamson (RT.com), Nikki White (ABTA) More

RTD11 Cape Town 14-15 April alongside the WTM Africa, the conference will  explore responsible tourism and how to secure competitive market advantage from it; discuss the issues of inclusion of marginalized citizens as producers and consumers of tourism and identify ways of making tourism more inclusive; and identify how the design of tourism products using Responsible Tourism principles can contribute to making better places for people to live in to live in and for people to visit. Confirmed speakers include: Adama Bah (ASSET Gambia & ICRT West Africa), Judy Kepher-Gona (STTA – Kenya), Lee-Hendor Ruiters (National Cleaner Production Centre – South Africa), Manisha Pande (Villageways, India ) More

2. Unite for West Africa

Peoples’ knowledge of the geography of Africa is so poor that bookings have dropped dangerously all over Africa – but particularly in West Africa. As Unite for West Africa argues “We don’t want to stand back and do nothing. We want to help in the fight against Ebola. We can do this by appealing to like-minded people who share our passion for West Africa. By providing financial support to organisations that are working under incredibly challenging conditions on the ground we know we can all play a part in helping bring an end to this outbreak.” more  A tourist’s view of the damaging economic knock-on effect in the Gambia of ebola ravishing other countries. Filmed November 2014

3. Orphanages – times up

A report by Next Generation Nepal shows that orphanages in Nepal contain over 15,000 children, yet at least two out of three of these children are not orphans. When the industry takes tourists to visit orphanages they provide the demand, creating the incentive for child trafficking. It is time to stop visiting orphanages – everywhere. Children are not tourist attractions  more

4. Water – new management manual published

Kuoni has published a manual on water management for hotels – written for hotels in Thailand it deserves a wider audience. The manual provides an introduction to the business skills required to measure, monitor, manage and reduce water consumption in hotels in order to have a more cost-effective and environmentally sound water management system.    download a copy

5. Sustainability  at TUI

The merger at TUI may well be good news for sustainability, the new group website proudly declares : “Both TUI Travel and TUI AG have a strong history of sustainability and the coming together of these two Groups will ensure that sustainability continues to be a priority for TUI as well as the rest of our industry. Our vision is to make travel experiences special whilst minimising environmental impact, respecting culture and people and bringing economic benefits to communities.” New TUI sustainability website   TUI Benelux has published their 2014 SD Report, which includes some great results. more

6. Airbnb

Airbnb has agreed with local authorities in Amsterdam which now joins Portland, Oregon and San Francisco as destinations where Airbnb collects local taxes. There are indications that similar agreements may be imminent in Paris and The Hague    more

7.  Sustainable Aviation

At a global level, the fact that aviation climate change emissions are increasing and that aircraft will remain a legacy user of carbon fuels and producer of greenhouse gas emissions, is problematic as there is no technological step-change solution on the horizon, and also because of the reliance of businesses upon, and the popularity of air transport with the public. At a local level the environmental costs associated with airport growth (e.g. noise and community disturbance, local air quality, habitat destruction) make it increasingly difficult to secure additional capacity. Short course with Professor Callum Thomas, Chair of Sustainable Aviation. Centre for Aviation, Transport and the Environment at Manchester Metropolitan University 2-6 FEBRUARY 2015 for details email n.campbell@mmu.ac.uk

8. World Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation  (WSCCA- 2015)

The “World Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation” will focus on “innovative approaches to implement climate change adaptation”, and will contribute to the further development of this fast-growing field. Dr. Keith Alverson, Coordinator, Climate Change Adaptation and Terrestrial Ecosystems Branch at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Kenya, will give the key-note speech on UNEP’s work in Climate Change Adaptation. Manchester, UK, 2-4 September 2015 further details w.leal@mmu.ac.uk

9. Is this a new trend – the alternative to bucket lists?

“One thing we’ve learned over the years at responsibletravel.com is that some of the biggest Bucket List travel experiences are in fact big travel faux pas. So we’ve emptied our bucket list – and refilled it with experiences that are not just sensational – but sustainable. … One more thing we’d scratch off our bucket list is… Bucket Lists. Rather than just ticking off the “big experiences” desired by thousands of other travellers, why not create your own adventure wish-list – with activities like training to be a warrior in Mongolia, staying in an Andalucian yurt or learning traditional craft skills in Scotland.”  more

10. Video Resources

There are three new videos available which may be of interest:
From ANVR in the Netherlands  What is a sustainable holiday? and how to book it.
From Travel Matters a UK agent
When the World Comes to Kerala, New Worlds Open Up – ‘CHEF’

And the videos of the WTM London Responsible Tourism programme are all available on line

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