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Management system needed to sustain tourism

Media release – January 21, 2004

Management system needed to maintain sustain tourism

New Zealand needs to introduce an environmental management system to cope with the fast growing tourist numbers, Lincoln University lecturer Michael Shone said today.

Mr Shone will be a guest speaker at the first international green globe in Kaikoura on March 3-5.

``With over two million international tourists visiting New Zealand last year, tourism represents the country’s largest earner of foreign exchange of $1billion,’’ he said.

``For the same period, there were over 16 million overnight trips made by domestic tourists in New Zealand. Taken together, the potential impacts of these visitors on host destinations and communities has seen growing attention given to the issue of sustainability in tourism development.

`` Given that tourism is forecasted to grow at an average rate of six per cent per annum for the next five years, it is of critical importance to plan for, and manage, the potential adverse effects of such growth.’’

The conference will discuss and seek solutions on how to cope with the consumptive nature of tourism in terms of its energy, water, waste and impacts on communities and landscapes.

Mr Shone said environmental management frameworks were critically important in order sustain and maintain tourism’s long-term viability.

The environmental benchmarking system of Green Globe was helping tourism businesses to showcase their commitment to high environmental ethics.

Kaikoura became the first tourist resort in New Zealand – and only the second community in the world - to earn Green Globe status last year. Green Globe is the world’s only global tourism certification programme.

Bill Meade, Sir Frank Moore, Wally Stone and Mark Solomon are keynote speakers for the conference.
Mr Solomon is kaiwhakahaere (chairman) of the Ngai Tahu runanga. He is also a director of Te Papa museum in Wellington.
Mr Meade is a sustainable tourism consultant from Washington. He will be addressing the conference on sustainable tourism initiatives around the world that he has been involved in, such as the Red Sea sustainable tourism initiative.

Sir Frank has been behind many of the major developments in Australia’s tourism industry over the past 20 years. He chaired the Tourism Council of Australia from 1984-96.

Mr Stone is chairman of Tourism New Zealand and chief executive of Whale Watch Kaikoura.

Kaikoura organisers are expecting national and international experts, lecturers and environmental specialists in sustainable tourism to attend the conference.


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