Setting a course for sustainability
Tourism stakeholders seek to establish framework
(Photo above courtesy/HikeVictoria.com)
A comprehensive, multi-layered agenda is in store for those registered for the upcoming IMPACT Sustainability Travel & Tourism conference in Victoria, scheduled for Jan. 21 to Jan. 24.
Over the course of the conference, attendees can expect a thorough schooling on a variety of sustainability issues, solutions and innovations, with an emphasis on their relevance to the Canadian tourism industry.
The conference has been designed to spark discussions about the legacy of tourism within Canada, and sets out to launch a national dialogue by stakeholders on the impact of tourism.
“The tourism industry has the greatest opportunity to spearhead change,” said Jill Doucette, founder of Synergy Enterprises and an organizer of the conference. “It is a high-profile, high-traffic industry and is more nimble (than other sectors).”
Doucette will be leading a session on clean technology for hotels.
The conference kicks off with a series of policy-in-action tours. These full-day tours take place in and around Victoria, highlighting sustainability challenges facing the busy, tourism-centric city. Delegates can choose between three themes: marine, transportation and hospitality, each at a cost of $99 per person.
The following two and a half days offer a schedule of plenary sessions and presentations to identify sustainability targets, opportunities and achievements for the tourism industry.
A conference keynote is titled “Canada: What Are We Sustaining?,” which examines Canada’s current sustainability status and trajectory, and how that compares on a global scale.
It will feature presentations by David Goldstein, CEO of Destination Canada, Elizabeth Becker, author of “Overbooked,” plus conference co-chairs Keith Henry, CEO of the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada and Dr. Rachel Dodds of the Ted Rogers School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at Ryerson University.
Other sessions will include “Floods, Fires & Frost,” on how wildfires and floods signal the impacts of climate change; “Tourism As A Tool For Conserving Natural & Cultural Assets” on how using tourism for environmental/social good creates strong economic returns; “Overbooked” on addressing capacity, seasonality and tourism dispersion; and “From Place to Place” on low emissions travel by air, water and road.
Recently confirmed to attend will be Glenn Jampol, an eco-tourism
pioneer from Costa Rica and founder of the Global Eco-tourism Network. He will participate in “Frameworks for Sustainable Destinations and Operators” on certifications and standards that promote sustainable growth.
Also participating in the conference will be some Canadian clean tech companies, such as Assured Renewables, a clean water and waste management company based in Vancouver. It will demonstrate the advantages of its large scale composting system for remote communities and tourist destinations.
Registration for the conference is available for $595 until Jan. 18. More information at: www.tourismlegacy.ca .