Parador Resort & Spa Hosts Inaugural “Global Partnership For Sustainable Tourism” Summit
Highly recognized for our dedication to environmental responsibility, Parador Resort & Spa is enormously proud to have hosted the first annual “Global Partnership For Sustainable Tourism” summit on January 18 & 19, 2011.
Organized by Costa Rica’s Ministry of Tourism and France’s Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development, Transport and Housing, delegates from Switzerland, United States, Panama, Norway, Austria, Colombia, South Africa, Germany, Spain, United Kingdom, Canada, Bahamas, Madagascar, Mali, Morocco, Republic of Korea, and Senegal were amongst those in attendance. The two day conference addressed global environmental concerns, as well as the creation of a permanent commission to facilitate the sharing between participating countries of information, technology and budgets as pertains to sustainable tourism.
The broad geographic scope of this organization — to be created through the conversion of the International Task Force on Sustainable Tourism Development (ITF-STD) — will have far-reaching and long-term potential to enable the quick adaption and implementation of ideas, projects, methods and policies to benefit the global tourism community. It will be registered as a Type II United Nations Partnership on Sustainable Development and consist of UN agencies, programs, national governments, intergovernmental organizations, social, environmental, and business organizations.
To date, international efforts to encourage sustainable consumption and production (SCP) — known as the Marrakech Process4 — has fostered voluntary task forces in specific areas, including tourism, which led to the creation of a provisional Task Force on Sustainable Tourism Development. Chaired by France, the committee boasts a membership of 18 countries and 25 organizations, and has successfully executed nearly 40 projects between 2006 and 2009. To further its work, this committee has recommended the establishment of a permanent Partnership that would promote synergy amongst participants by creating and applying policies. The Partnership will implement its activities by closely following the policy recommendations of the ITF-STD with an initial focus that includes the following:training materials and tools, facilitating coherent programs, addressing the needs of individual members, providing blueprints for the replication of successful projects and initiatives, and preventing unnecessary duplication of work by building communication networks and joint ventures.
• Policies: Contribute to the design and implementation of public policies that support sustainable tourism development, including land-use planning and integrated coastal-zone management.
• Development and Investments: Mainstream sustainability into tourism development projects and increase investments in sustainable tourism.
• Capacity Building: Enhance the ability of national governments, local authorities, and the business sector to implement policies and management practices that deliver more sustainable tourism products.
• Awareness and Advocacy: Document and disseminate information on the economic, social, cultural, and environmental benefits of sustainable tourism to governments, tourism enterprises, tourists, and local communities, as well as promoting demand for these products.
• Implementation and monitoring: Foster the implementation of innovative management practices and technologies in tourism operations and monitor the respective economic, environmental, cultural, and social benefits.
• Delivery by 2013 of concrete analytical, communications, policy, and business sector management tools and capacity building activities, demonstrating environmental, economic, cultural, and social gains from sustainable tourism. The financial operation will be managed through the United Nations Environment Program, Division of Technology, Industry and Economics (UNEP-DTIE) with support from the Steering Committee of the Partnership.