In January 2020 a group of tourism companies, organizations and individuals signed Tourism Declares, thereby joining together different players in the tourism industry to declare a climate emergency. This means not only showing commitment in word, but also in taking action to reduce their carbon emissions and environmental footprint.
We — Audrey Scott and Daniel Noll — have also signed this declaration, and thereby agree to the following five commitments.
- Develop a ‘Climate Emergency Plan’
- Share my commitment and progress publicly
- Cut my carbon emissions in line with IPPC advice
- Work with others in the travel industry
- Advocate for change throughout the travel industry
What does this mean to us?
We have been advocating for and working in sustainable tourism at Uncornered Market for over a decade. We believe in the power of travel to be a force for good, to benefit not only the travelers, but also the communities and environments they visit. Through our advisory with travel organizations and brands, as well as the writing we do for travelers, we aim to steer companies and travelers towards more sustainable choices.
The climate crisis is real, as is travel and tourism’s contribution to global carbon emissions. Therefore, it’s up to all of us – from the individual traveler to the big companies – to do their part.
We hope to reduce carbon emissions — and our environmental footprint as a whole — each year by being selective about when and how we travel, both professionally and personally. This includes:
- Much of our work and projects require us to be on the ground, so it’s unlikely that we will be able to avoid all flights altogether. However, we will work with clients to see if it’s possible to use other options like virtual meetings or using alternative transport. However, if that is impossible then we will try and combine multiple projects, conferences and/or personal travel together into one trip so as to reduce the number of flights required.
- Continuing to advocate for and educate through our projects, website/social media channels and speaking opportunities how travelers and travel brands can reduce their carbon footprint through decisions and actions around transportation, accommodation, food, activities and souvenirs/shopping. For consumers, this includes raising awareness about the choices they have to reduce their environmental footprint – not only when they travel, but also at home. For travel brands and tourism companies, it includes advocating for more environmentally friendly operations and the use of the Ecotourism Footprint calculator (or similar tools) to monitor the carbon footprint of their tours and other activities. This provides a better understanding of how adjusting accommodation, food, transport and activities can reduce emissions in their tours and offerings.
- Prioritizing work with tourism brands, organizations and initiatives that are engaged in sustainable tourism, including a focus on both conservation/environmental protection and socio-economic benefits to local communities and people. Promoting travel experiences that invest back into the community and contribute to the local economy, conservation efforts and culture.
- Selecting travel options and destinations that don’t involve flying, and using alternative transport where possible. Sharing information about these alternatives so as to raise awareness in consumers of their options, and also the fun of rail travel.
- Offsetting flights we cannot avoid by investing and supporting reforestation, tree planting or forest protection initiatives via the Trillion Tree Campaign or similar. Encouraging our community and readers to do the same.
- Turning down work that involves excessive flying, or seeking alternative ways of working virtually to reduce the need to fly as frequently.
- Promoting alternative transportation options and flight-free travel as much as possible.
- Reducing carbon emissions as individuals and as a business, using tools like the Environmental Calculator (or similar) to understand and monitor the carbon footprint from travel, business and lifestyle decisions.
Want to get involved?
If you work in tourism and feel similarly about the climate emergency, please visit Tourism Declares. The goal is to to encourage and enable as many travel companies, organizations and individuals to get involved, declare a climate emergency, and take action.