Associate feature: Time for tourism to declare
Whilst we grapple with the impact of COVID we must continue to play our part in tackling the climate emergency.
That is why VisitScotland has joined with Wild Scotland and Sail Scotland to step up the country’s commitment to responsible tourism and tackling the climate emergency, by becoming the first national tourism organisation in the world to sign up to the Tourism Declares initiative.
Through this partnership, VisitScotland has joined a growing list of over one hundred travel groups, businesses and individuals who have declared under the banner Tourism Declares a Climate Emergency; an initiative committed to coming together to find solutions to the climate crisis.
The initiative aims to encourage positive contributions toward addressing climate change, especially as the sector looks to recover from COVID-19.
As part of this plan we have committed to reducing our emissions, and those of the sector’s, in line with Scottish Government’s targets to become net-zero by 2045, and the national tourism strategy’s ambition for responsible growth.
We are also stepping up our promotion of public transport and active travel; including maximising the transformational benefits of hosting the UCI Cycling World Championships in 2023.
Wider efforts on responsible tourism will see VisitScotland develop its community engagement and visitor management; work which has been ongoing particularly following the first national COVID-19 lockdown.
We also administer the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund which helps manage the success of popular destinations.
Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters has also been encouraging responsible engagement and participation through its promotion.
The declaration comes less than a year from Glasgow playing host to COP26 and, by working closely with the tourism and events industry, we can rebuild responsibly and protect our beautiful country for generations to come.
Malcolm Roughead is the Chief Executive of VisitScotland. This piece was sponsored by VisitScotland.