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Responsible Tourism News – February 2015

February 2, 2015
Harold Goodwin
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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@haroldgoodwin.info or post it on our RTNews Facebook page.

1. Responsible Tourism in Destinations in Ireland!

RTD9 will be held in Dublin on the 11th March 2015. Book your place and travel now.
This full day event will see a wide range of national and international speakers discussing topics around the theme of 'Achieving Change'. This full-day conference will offer insightful perspectives into ways in which we can achieve change in destinations, communities, businesses, visitors and consumers through a responsible tourism approach - including creating competitive marketing advantage, contributing to conservation, destination development, enhancing communities and more.
The 2015 Irish Responsible Tourism Awards will be presented after the conference. More details the conference here and awards here.
There are several field trip options being added to the programme including a day or overnight tour to the Loop Head Peninsula, a tour of the Guinness Storehouse and more to come. Details of these are on the icrt.ie website and must be pre-booked on the eventbrite page.
Registration for the conference is open on eventbrite - book now to ensure you get a place.

2. African Responsible Tourism Awards & RTD11 alongside WTM Africa

The closing date for nominations for the Africa Responsible Tourism Awards is Friday February 6th so if youwant to nominate for Poverty Reduction, Beach Tourism, Destination, Engaging People and Culture, Blog or resource management do it now.   Only those nominated can have a chance to win in these prestigious inaugural awards, part of the family of World Responsible Tourism Awards. Make your nominations for the African Responsible Tourism Awards 2015, and help us find the most inspiring and enduring responsible holiday experiences in the world.  

The Awards will be presented  during WTM Africa in April. The 11th International Conference on Responsible Tourism in Destinations takes place alongside 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. For more information

3. 10th International Conference on Responsible Tourism in Destinations,  Mallorca, 25th -26th March

Jane Ashton of TUI, Robin Searle of Travel Weekly , Katy Sayburn of BH Mallorca Hotels and Tim Williamson now do responsibletravel.com are amongst the confirmed key note speakers.  Back in the 1990s there was the first initiative to ensure sustainability in a major resort, we are bringing back together the people involved in the the first major partnership effort  to reverse some of the damage caused by uncontrolled mass tourism. Martin Brackenbury, Eduardo Gamero, Antonio Pallicer, and German Porras.  We'll be looking back at what the intervention achieved and considering its legacy. We'll look more broadly at the Mediterranean experience of tourism, sustainable transport, marketing for sustainability, and at the current issue in Calvia and how they can be tackled.

For full details of the conference and the excursion day link

4. 14 of the 15 hottest years have all been this century

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has ranked 2014 as the hottest year on record, as part of a continuing trend. After consolidating leading international datasets, WMO noted that the difference in temperature between the warmest years is only a few hundredths of a degree – less than the margin of uncertainty. More

5. Thomas Cook's 8th annual Sustainability Report published

Thomas Cook Group has release its 8th annual Sustainability Report. In 2014 the Group increased the number of Local Label sustainable excursions by 80%, excursions which promote local traditions and cultures, bringing them to life for customers looking for a more authentic experience on their holiday. They also generate environmental, social and economic benefits for the destinations and communities they operate in. Thomas Cook improved their airline fuel efficiency by 5.6%, compared to the baseline year of 2009; worked with 12 Concept Hotels in Rhodes to help reduce water usage; and launched an innovative app for our pilots which has reduced paper usage by 1.4 million sheets. Download the report.

6. New Sustainability website for the TUI Group

"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." There is a new post-merger sustainability website for the TUI Group. Link

7. 2015 World Responsible Tourism Awards launch 2nd March.

The World Responsible Tourism Awards 2015 open for nominations on 2nd March 2015. Now in their 12th year, the World Responsible Tourism Awards are seeking shining examples of some of the best practise in responsible tourism. Companies who can demonstrate the difference they are making to people’s lives and their cultural and natural environments should submit  via the Awards website from 2nd March 2015. Visit the website now to read previous winners’ stories and about the Awards.

8. Tumbleweed rolls through West African resorts: Ebola and tourism crisis management

Misinformation lies at the heart of the problem. Although many foreign governments have declared Senegal and the Gambia to be Ebola-free, spreading this message to tourists has proved incredibly difficult. Noisier news reports of death tolls, medical-staff shortages and NGO-promoted appeals in affected countries have drowned out other voices. Moreover, those reports play to international prejudices. With the overwhelming foreign perception of Africa as one country, the problem has no boundaries. Read more by Hermione Nevill on the World Bank website

9.  The UK Green Party Policy on Tourism

The Green Party has some very detailed policies on tourism, interesting from a Responsible Tourism perspective. To pick one, of many, worth reflecting on.

"Where tourism developments by overseas companies prove unsustainable, host local communities will need to work together to enable them to reclaim disused tourist facilities and complexes for use by the local population, by means of renovation work, or, where this is not possible, demolition and rebuilding. Multi-use developments should be encouraged, so that they can better meet the needs of local people and tourists together. The Green Party supports countries and communities seeking to control development in these ways." More

10. Reduce your travel footprint by reducing your plastic footprint!

A brief video overview of the plastic pollution crisis and some easy suggested alternatives when you travel. Watch

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