Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

GSTC News

Expand Messages
  • Dave Wiggins
    Global Sustainable Tourism Council Seeks Input on Second Phase of Global Criteria for Sustainable Destinations Interested Parties from Emerging and Developed
    Message 1 of 7 , Dec 3, 2012
    • 0 Attachment
       
      Global Sustainable Tourism Council Seeks Input on Second Phase of Global Criteria for Sustainable Destinations

       

      Interested Parties from Emerging and Developed Destinations Encouraged to Comment on Revised Criteria

       

      The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) http://www.gstcouncil.org/ recently announced the second phase of its new Destination Criteria. Overseen by GSTC’s Destination Working Group and managed by NGO partner Sustainable Travel International, the GSTC is once again soliciting input and comments from all travel and tourism stakeholders on this project, ensuring diverse feedback is collected. The GSTC is also requesting support in reaching out to other parties that might be interested in participating.

       

      The Global Sustainable Tourism Council’s Criteria for Destinations are designed to orient destination managers, communities, and businesses toward the steps that are needed to sustain their natural and cultural assets, while benefiting local communities. The Destination Criteria complement the existing GSTC Criteria for Hotels and Tour Operators, which have become a worldwide standard for tourism businesses.

       

      Based on the results of the first phase of this project, which included an international public call for feedback and pilot testing of the criteria in six Early Adopter Destinations around the world, the GSTC has revised and improved the Destination Criteria. The new draft version is available for public consultation and input until February 15, 2013.

       

      “Our goal with the public consultancy is to gather input from industry leaders regarding how sustainability can be measured and credibly demonstrated within destinations.  We are pleased with the success of Phase One in defining sustainable tourism at a global level,” said GSTC Board Chairperson Kelly S. Bricker, Ph.D. “We aim to enhance the criteria in Phase Two and further build consumer confidence, promote business prosperity, foster community benefits, and fight false claims.”

       

      “We are proud to continue supporting these efforts to more clearly define sustainability at the destination level. After visiting all six early-adopter destinations during Phase One of the pilot, we are confident that the end result will be better tools for destinations looking to implement sustainability policy, strategies, and management systems,” added Sustainable Travel International President and CEO Brian Mullis. “The feedback received from the initial public consultation was extremely useful, and we encourage participation in this next round. This will help us to consider the diverse needs of all stakeholders who can benefit from the project’s outcomes.”

       

      The GSTC invites all interested parties to comment on or suggest improvements to the Destination Criteria until February 15, 2013 and all interested destinations to apply for Phase Two of the pilot by January 15, 2013; contact destinations@... for an application for the pilot.

       

       The survey is available in English and Spanish. These comments, along with feedback received via early-adopter destinations, will inform a final version of the Destination Criteria.

       

      About the GSTC

      The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC - http://new.gstcouncil.org/) is a global initiative dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism efforts around the world. The GSTC works to expand understanding of and access to sustainable tourism practices; helps identify and generate markets for sustainable tourism; and educates about and advocates for a set of universal principles, as defined by the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. The Criteria, a set of voluntary principles that provide a framework for the sustainability of tourism businesses across the globe, is the cornerstone of our initiative. For more information, visit www.gstcouncil.org.

       

      About the GSTC Destination Criteria

      The GSTC’s Destination Criteria were developed by a panel of business owners, academics, government officials, and other experts, who examined the UN World Tourism Organization’s Indicators of Sustainable Development and other such guidelines currently in existence. Because the criteria are intended to describe a globally applicable set of minimum steps needed to approach sustainability, the criteria are seen as a baseline that each destination should add to or adjust as needed.

       

      The GSTC does not aim to certify destinations as sustainable; rather, the Council will review existing certification standards and acknowledge those that meet their criteria. However, any destination will be able to use the new criteria as a guide to becoming environmentally, culturally, and socially sustainable.

       

      About Sustainable Travel International

      A global non-profit and industry thought leader since 2002, Sustainable Travel International (www.sustainabletravelinternational.org) offers innovative programs that support sustainable development through responsible travel. Our practical solutions help destinations and businesses of all sizes respond to sustainability challenges, while strengthening the positive impacts of tourism worldwide.

       
    • Dave Wiggins
      Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA) Achieves Recognized Global Sustainable Tourism Council Status The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC)
      Message 2 of 7 , Jan 7, 2013
      • 0 Attachment

        Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA) Achieves ‘Recognized’ Global Sustainable Tourism Council Status

         

        The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) recently announced that Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA) has attained the organization’s ‘recognized’ certification status. The awarded status benchmarks its public commitment to promote sustainable tourism products and services recognized by the GSTC.

         

        FTTSA has committed to using the GSTC Criteria – the first and only global framework for defining a sustainable travel benchmark – as the reference for its sustainable travel criteria. Rigorous review and authorization procedures have determined that FTTSA’s standards are considered equivalent to the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria; the worldwide minimum requirement for tourism businesses of all size to approach sustainability.

         

        “FTTSA is very proud to achieve GSTC recognition as this affirms our status as a leading pioneer for sustainable tourism in Africa,” FTTSA Executive Director Jennifer Seif said. “GSTC recognition benefits businesses certified by FTTSA by affording preferential access to distribution channels.”

         

        Thirteen bodies (including FTTSA) have received the GSTC-recognized status:

         

        ·         Austrian Ecolabel for Tourism  (Österreichisches Umweltzeichen)

        ·         Biosphere Responsible Tourism

        ·         Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST) for hotels

        ·         EarthCheck Company Standard

        ·         Eco-Certification Malta

        ·         Ecotourism Australia's ecotourism standard

        ·         Ecotourism Australia's advanced ecotourism standard

        ·         Ecotourism Ireland Certification Programme

        ·         European Ecotourism Labeling Standard (EETLS)

        ·         Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA)

        ·         Rainforest Alliance standard for tourism operations

        ·         Sustainable Tourism Eco-Certification Program (STEP)

        ·         Travelife Sustainability System for Hotels and Accommodations

        ·         Japan Environmentally Sustainable Accommodations International Standard (ESAIS)

         

        Each of the GSTC-recognized organizations has taken the first of three steps in establishing the GSTC process. Phases of establishing the global benchmark include recognizing the GSTC standard; evaluation of certification process for transparency by a third party; full GSTC-accreditation (beginning December 2014).

         

        “By committing to sustainable tourism standards, FTTSA has provided tourists with the assurance that their travel benefits local communities and economies, and that the business is operated ethically and in a socially and environmentally responsible mannersaid Leilani Latimer, Director, Sustainability Initiatives, Sabre Holdings and GSTC Board Member.

         

        The GSTC will continue to work with standard owners around the world to provide GSTC recognition. All standards are encouraged to apply for GSTC-recognized status and all certification programs to apply for approval. To learn more about the GSTC process please visit the GSTC website http://www.gstcouncil.org/.

         

        About GSTC

        The Global Sustainable Tourism Council is a global initiative dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism efforts around the world. The GSTC works to expand understanding of and access to sustainable tourism practices; helps identify and generate markets for sustainable tourism; educates about and advocates for a set of universal principles, as defined by the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. The Criteria, a set of voluntary principles that provide a framework for the sustainability of tourism businesses across the globe, are the keystone of this initiative. For more information visit www.gstcouncil.org.

         
      • Dave Wiggins
        Travelife Achieves Recognized Global Sustainable Tourism Council Status for Its Tour Operator and Travel Agents Standard The Global Sustainable Tourism
        Message 3 of 7 , Jan 28, 2013
        • 0 Attachment
          Travelife Achieves ‘Recognized’ Global Sustainable Tourism Council Status for Its Tour Operator and Travel Agents Standard

           

          The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (http://www.gstcouncil.org/ - GSTC) recently announced that the Travelife Standard for Tour Operators and Travel Agents has achieved ‘recognized’ certification status. This is the first standard for tour operators and travel agents to receive certification from the GSTC.  The awarded status benchmarks its commitment to promote sustainable tourism products and services recognized by the GSTC.

           

          “By committing to sustainable tourism standards, Travelife is providing tourists with socially and environmentally responsible travel opportunities,” said Leilani Latimer, Director, Sustainability Initiatives, Sabre Holdings and GSTC Board Member. “We commend Travelife for becoming the first standard for tour operators and travel agents.”

           

          Travelife has committed to using the GSTC Criteria – the first and only global framework for defining a sustainable travel benchmark – as the reference for its sustainable travel criteria. Rigorous review and authorization procedures have determined that Travelife’s Tour Operator and Travel Agent standard is considered equivalent to the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria; the worldwide minimum requirement for tourism businesses of all size to approach sustainability.

           

          “I am delighted that the Travelife for Tour Operators and Travel Agents standard has achieved GSTC Recognition,” said Naut Kusters, manager of Travelife for Tour Operators.  “It will provide direction to committed tour operators and recognition for front runners. The standard is comprehensive and profound and has integrated leading global standards and guidelines for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. Thanks to the support of the European Union, the Travelife Sustainability System is already promoted by more than 15 national travel associations,” Kusters said.

           

          To date, 15 standards (including Travelife for Tour Operators) have received the GSTC-recognized status including:

           

          ·         Travelife for Hotels and Accommodations

          ·         Austrian Ecolabel for Tourism (Österreichisches Umweltzeichen)

          ·         Biosphere Responsible Tourism

          ·         Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST) for hotels

          ·         EarthCheck Company Standard

          ·         Eco-Certification Malta

          ·         Ecotourism Australia's ecotourism standard

          ·         Ecotourism Australia's advanced ecotourism standard

          ·         Ecotourism Ireland Certification Programme

          ·         European Ecotourism Labeling Standard (EETLS)

          ·         Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA)

          ·         Japan Environmentally Sustainable Accommodations Int’l Standard (ESAIS)

          ·         Rainforest Alliance standard for tourism operations

          ·         Sustainable Tourism Eco-Certification Program (STEP)

          ·         Travelife Sustainability System for Hotels and Accommodations

           

          Each of the GSTC-recognized organizations has taken the first of three steps in establishing the GSTC process. Phases of establishing the global benchmark include recognizing the GSTC standard; evaluation of certification process for transparency by a third party; full GSTC-accreditation (beginning December 2014).

           

          The GSTC will continue to work with standard owners around the world to provide GSTC recognition. All standards are encouraged to apply for GSTC-recognized status and all certification programs to apply for Approval. To learn more about the GSTC process please visit the GSTC website http://www.gstcouncil.org/.

           

          About GSTC

          The Global Sustainable Tourism Council is a global initiative dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism efforts around the world. The GSTC works to expand understanding of and access to sustainable tourism practices; helps identify and generate markets for sustainable tourism; educates about and advocates for a set of universal principles, as defined by the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. The Criteria, a set of voluntary principles that provide a framework for the sustainability of tourism businesses across the globe, are the keystone of this initiative. For more information visit www.gstcouncil.org.

           

          About Travelife

          Founded in 2007, the Travelife Sustainability System promotes sustainable practices within the travel and tourism industry. Travelife works in partnership with its tour operator members who use the sustainability system as a tool to improve their own sustainability as well of that of their supply chain. Travelife is providing training, implementation tools and certification for Tour Operators & Travel Agents as well as for Hotels & Accommodations.  For more information visit www.travelife.org.

        • Dave Wiggins
          Global Sustainable Tourism Council Signs Landmark Memorandum of Understanding With Global Travel & Tourism Partnership The Global Sustainable Tourism Council
          Message 4 of 7 , Jul 8, 2013
          • 0 Attachment
            Global Sustainable Tourism Council Signs Landmark Memorandum of Understanding With Global Travel & Tourism Partnership

            The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC - http://www.gstcouncil.org/) is pleased to announce a partner association with the Global Travel & Tourism Partnership (GTTP - http://www.gttp.org/), an industry philanthropic initiative to teach students about careers in travel and tourism in more than 5,600 schools in 11 countries. GTTP Executive Director Nancy Needham and GSTC CEO Mauro Marrocu formalized the alliance through a joint Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed last month.
             
            According to the MoU, the two organizations will establish a working relationship and collaborate on projects for a period of two years. The agreement details the partners’ joint advocacy and mutual support of the GSTC’s mission to promote sustainable tourism development and the GTTP’s mission to educate secondary school students on career opportunities in travel and tourism.
             
            Among the various collaborative efforts currently being planned, the GSTC will endorse GTTP curricular materials and GSTC members will have an opportunity to mentor GTTP students about sustainability practices in the travel and tourism industry. GTTP will endorse the mission of the GSTC and reference its Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria in GTTP curricular materials. The Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria (http://www.gstcouncil.org/sustainable-tourism-gstc-criteria.html) are recognized and endorsed by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), which are Permanent Members of the Board of Directors of the GSTC.
             
            “This is an exciting time for the GSTC and the future of our industry,” GSTC CEO Mauro Marrocu said. “The creation of a knowledge network, and the promotion of education and training initiatives in sustainable tourism worldwide are a fundamental part of our efforts. We see this new cooperation as a milestone because the GTTP provides a unique opportunity to teach sustainability values and practices to future generations,” he said.
             
            “Sharing the GSTC’s vision of building an international understanding of sustainable tourism standards, the GTTP encourages students to apply critical thinking about the positive impact and application of these principles both in their home countries and globally.” Nancy Needham, executive director of GTTP said. “The collaboration of the GSTC will be extremely valuable in enhancing our education of sustainable tourism via our Passport to the World program for over 450,000 students as year, as well as our teacher training programs and student mentoring initiatives,” she said.
             
            Representative GTTP advisory board members echoed Needham’s enthusiasm for the new partnership.
             
            “The travel and tourism industry has been at the forefront promoting sustainability and we are pleased that GTTP students will now have access to GSTC’s expertise in this area,” said Ingrid Eras-Magdalena, chair of the GTTP Advisory Board and vice president of People Development and Staffing at Starwood Hotels & Resorts, EAME.
             
            “The sustainability of travel and tourism depends on attracting young people to careers in our industry.” Gordon Wilson, CEO, Travelport said. “This new initiative will further enhance both our organizations’ efforts and will introduce more resources on sustainable tourism to our students,” he said. 
             
            About GSTC
            The Global Sustainable Tourism Council is a global initiative dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism efforts around the world. The GSTC works to expand understanding of and access to sustainable tourism practices; helps identify and generate markets for sustainable tourism; educates about and advocates for a set of universal principles, as defined by the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. The Criteria, a set of voluntary principles that provide a framework for the sustainability of tourism businesses across the globe, are the keystone of this initiative. For more information visit www.gstcouncil.org. 
             
            About GTTP
            The Global Travel and Tourism Partnership is an industry philanthropic initiative to foster future talent and tackle the global skills shortage. The GTTP educates secondary school students about careers in Travel & Tourism at a time when they are making career and education choices. The GTTP works in 11 countries in Europe, Africa, East Asia, and North and South America. It serves some 450,000 students in more than 5,600 schools. For more about GTTP visit http://www.gttp.org or Facebook. 
             
            Contact:
            Aimee Romero/ Gwen Migita - info@...
          • Dave Wiggins
            Mara Naboisho Becomes First Wildlife Conservancy Early Adopter of Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria for Destinations Mara Naboisho is the first wildlife
            Message 5 of 7 , Oct 21, 2013
            • 0 Attachment

              Mara Naboisho Becomes First Wildlife Conservancy “Early Adopter” of Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria for Destinations

               

              Mara Naboisho is the first wildlife conservancy to participate in the Global Sustainable Tourism Council’s (GSTC) Early Adopters Program. In doing so, the destination has achieved an important milestone in the recognition of sustainable tourism as a model to protect an area of high concentration of wildlife in Kenya’s Greater Mara region, while empowering the local Maasai community.

              In 2010, Basecamp Foundation Kenya was requested by some 500 Maasai landowners to facilitate the creation of the conservancy as a community wildlife and tourism cluster. After three years of intense planning, compromise, and implementation of strict policies, the conservancy decided to participate in the GSTC Early Adopter “In a time when complex solutions are critical to the conservation of the last remaining vestiges of spectacular wildlife, as well as the improvement of quality of life for the traditional landowners of the Mara, this project represents hope in finding solutions.  This project will continue to be a leader and a case to exemplify hope for the future” said Dr. Kelly Bricker, Chair of the GSTC.

              Home to a large variety of flora and fauna, Mara Naboisho Conservancy is a 50,000-acre community located in a pristine part of Narok South district, next to the heavily trafficked tourist destination Masai Mara National Reserve, approximately 250 km from Kenya’s capital. Lars Lindkvist, CEO of Basecamp Foundation, which oversees the destination said, "Mara Naboisho Conservancy is honored to be the first wildlife conservancy to participate in the GSTC's Early Adopter Program. We are proud of our innovative approach to sustainable tourism, which is already realizing significant benefits, and improving lives and livelihoods in the beautiful Masai Mara. From the evaluation, we recognize a great opportunity to monitor and report on our impacts going forward, so that we can celebrate our success, identify improvements, and collaborate both regionally and across the globe."

              Through a participatory planning process that deserves global recognition for inclusiveness of its stakeholders, innovation, and outcomes, Mara Naboisho Conservancy has already begun transforming lives and land. “Throughout its short existence, the destination has already seen a significant increase in wildlife numbers and a strengthening of local traditions, while encouraging Maasai landowners to take a proactive role in their own survival”, revealed the evaluation from Sustainable Travel International , the lead NGO partner for the GSTC on the Early Adopter Program.

              "The results from Mara Naboisho Conservancy's assessment are outstanding. The tourism model implemented by the destination successfully integrates many fundamental sustainable tourism practices and principles. As the conservancy grows, it will only increase its positive impact on tourism partners and landowners. It is truly a global showcase for the wildlife conservancy model." added Jeremy Sampson, STI Senior Director and Destination Specialists, who also conducted the on-site assessment.

              About the GSTC

              The Global Sustainable Tourism Council is a global initiative dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism efforts around the world. Housed within the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the GSTC works to expand understanding of and access to sustainable tourism practices; helps identify and generate markets for sustainable tourism; and educates about and advocates for a set of universal principles, as defined by the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. The Criteria, a set of voluntary principles that provide a framework for the sustainability of tourism businesses across the globe, is the cornerstone of our initiative. For more information, visit http://www.gstcouncil.org/.

              About the GSTC Destination Criteria

              A panel of business owners, academics, government officials, and other experts, who examined the UN World Tourism Organization’s Indicators of Sustainable Development and other such guidelines currently in existence, developed the GSTC’s Destination Criteria. Because the criteria are intended to describe a globally applicable set of minimum steps needed to approach sustainability, the criteria are seen as a baseline that each destination should add to or adjust as needed.

              The GSTC does not aim to certify destinations as sustainable; rather, the Council will review existing certification standards and acknowledge those that meet their criteria. However, any destination will be able to use the new criteria as a guide to becoming environmentally, culturally, and socially sustainable.

              About Sustainable Travel International

              Sustainable Travel International is a non-profit organization with a purpose. We’ve been collaborating with destinations, businesses and travelers to implement innovative sustainable tourism development and conservation solutions since 2002. We combine the mission and transparency of a non-profit NGO with the business acumen and expertise of the private sector, ensuring our partners achieve their desired results and receive a strong return on investment.

            Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.