Towards a green economy
without the right laws and regulations in place, or the right governance structure to oversee them. Legislation should protect the environment, limit potentially harmful development, control detrimental practices, and encourage healthy behaviour. Clear rules in these areas, based on the destination strategy and its unique asset base, determine the direction, scale and scope of government and private investment in more sustainable tourism.
Enabling conditions for greener destination planning 1. Higher-level government, community and private tourism authorities must establish mechanisms for coordinating with ministries responsible for the environ ment, energy, labour, agriculture, transport, health, finance, security, and other relevant areas, as well as with local governments. Clear requirements such as zoning, protected areas, environmental rules and regulations, labour rules, agricultural standards, and health requirements (particularly for water, waste and sanitation) establish clear rules of the game, and define the operating climate for investment. These decisions relate very closely to fiscal and investment considerations discussed in the following section.
2. Organisations engaged in developing tourism strategies should make use of credible scien- tific methods and tools encompassing economic, environmental and social approaches and assess- ments for sustainable development that will help stakeholders related to different components of the value chain understand their environmental and socio-cultural impacts.
3. Tourism Master Plans or Strategies provide a supply- side approach for developing a tourism destination. Environmental and social issues must be included in these plans in order to manage the critical assets and promote greener outcomes. Green transformation programmes will be more effective if produced by a multi-stakeholder participatory planning proc ess, as well as through the development of partnerships at local, national, regional and international levels. Multilateral environmental and social agreements and the organisations that support them should be included in the process.21
society stakeholders should make a decision on the kind of tourism industry they want to consolidate in the medium and long terms, considering the possible impacts on the natural resource base and
21. For instance, these include the principles of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism adopted by UNWTO and endorsed by the UN Gen eral Assembly as well as the recommendations and guidelines provided by Multilateral Environmental Agreements and conventions, as appropriate, including the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the World Heritage Conven tion, the United Nations Framework Convention on Cli mate Change (UNFCCC), the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the Code of Conduct for the protection of children against sexual exploitation in travel and tourism.
the development opportunities for the country. Therefore, the creation
of a sound institutional
framework is required. Coordination among key actors and environmental regulations enforcement are key conditions. In addition, when investing in tourism sustainability, main short-, medium- and long-term objectives should be followed, based on:
■ The contribution to country macroeconomic balances;
■ The creation of local direct and
employment; ■ The use of local raw materials and inputs;
■ The benefits created in other productive sectors (multipliers outside the industry); ■ The effects on local development and poverty;
■ The modernisation, diversification and sustainability of the tourism value chain; and
■ The growth of the internal and external demand for sustainable tourism.
4. When promoting sustainable tourism, a coherent destination planning policy is necessary to create a sound international reputation, a country brand that differentiates and positions the country competitively. According to FutureBrand (2008), while tourism is often the most visible manifestation of a country brand, it is clear that the image, reputation and brand values of a country impact its products, population, investment opportunities and even its foreign aid and funding. Therefore, a holistic nation approach is required in order to align public and private sector initiatives to create a successful country brand based on sustainability.
Public, private and civil-
5. Assessment of carrying capacity and social fabric should be considered to take into account external and internal impacts of tourism at destination. While it is difficult to evaluate due to great differences from one destination to another, maximum thresholds could be agreed on so as to provide guidance for the development of planning policies.
4.3 Fiscal policies and economic instruments
The greening of tourism will require a more sophisticated use of instruments within government purview, such as fiscal policy, public investment, and pricing mechanisms for different public goods.