Recognized for excellence in eco-friendly practices and sustainable development strategies, the 2011 winners of the Tourism for Tomorrow contest were revealed at a recent industry conference, the 11th Global Travel and Tourism Summit, held in Las Vegas.
Singita Pamushana’s Wildlife Preservation Efforts
African wild-life lodge Singita Pamushana in Zimbabwe earned the top award in the conservation division for actively participating, in partnership with the Malilangwe Trust, in the regeneration of over 122,000 acres of wildlife habitat harmed by over-poaching. Hosting nearly 40 different habitats, the Malilangwe Wildlife Reserve is home to many endangered animals and 4% of all the world’s bird species. Together, the Malilangwe Trust and Singita Pamushana supply jobs for 200 locals, and provide both clean water and food for over 10,000 people in nearby villages.
Intrepid Travel’s Green Energy Success
Tour operator Intrepid Travel from Australia won in the Global Tourism Business category, reserved for companies with over 500 employees, thanks to its use of green-energy practices. Intrepid tracks and reduces carbon emissions in its 30 offices around the world, and has introduced a fair-trade policy for its supply chain. Each year, Intrepid guides 100,000 travelers on trips to 130 countries, and its non-profit organization, called Intrepid Foundation, promotes education, sustainable development and human rights in areas where the tour operator travels.
Alpine Pearls’s Sustainable Tourism Solution
Austrian non-profit association Alpine Pearls won in the Destination Stewardship category based on its green approach to local tourism. A network of 24 communities that support environmentally friendly ways of travel, Alpine Pearls helps reduce emissions and crowding in the highly touristic Alpine area of Europe (France, Slovenia, Austria, Switzerland, Germany and Italy) by providing energy-smart intercommunity transportation: free bicycle rentals, solar powered vehicles and other types of low-emission public transportation.
Guludo Beach Lodge’s Community Contribution
Mozambique’s Guludo Beach Lodge took first place in the Community Benefit category for its strong commitment to culture and community development – all of which offers positive advantages to the locals. The lodge operates a non-profit charity, called Nema Foundation, which works to increase agriculture production, eliminate malaria, increase healthcare and provide clean drinking water. These projects take place in 16 nearby communities and are based on United Nations Millennium Development goals.
Key Statistics – Sustainability in Tourism (source: ICD Research)
- Close to 66% of companies in the Eco Tourism industry seek to increase their budget over the next year for sustainability projects; only 5% will lower their sustainability budgets.
- At least 46% of hotel and cruise industry companies are working with customers, suppliers and other partners to reach sustainable supply chain goals.