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Regions selected for sustainable tourism project

Regions selected for sustainable tourism project

Regional tourism organisations from Bay of Plenty, Nelson, Wanaka and Southland/Fiordland have been selected to take part in the government’s $1.2 million Environmentally Sustainable Tourism project.

Tourism Minister Mark Burton and Environment Minister Marian Hobbs announced today that Tourism Bay of Plenty, Latitude Nelson, Destination Wanaka and Venture Southland/Destination Fiordland (combined) were selected for the project.

The three-year project is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Tourism and Ministry for the Environment. Enterprise Northland and Destination Rotorua are already involved, making their local tourism sectors more sustainable.

Mark Burton said the project would help tourism operators tap into the rewards of smart environmental businesses practice.

"Looking after the environment while boosting marketing opportunities and brand integrity is good for business, and this is recognised in the New Zealand Tourism Strategy 2010," he said.

Marian Hobbs says she's encouraged to see regional tourism organisations actively linking smart environmental practice with future business success.

"The project provides resources, knowledge and practical tips for tourism operators to incorporate environmental improvements into their business," Marian Hobbs said.

The project encourages regions to develop a sustainable tourism charter for local businesses and provide experts for practical improvements, which could include energy efficiency, waste reduction, recycling, water quality and conservation.

Participation was invited from all 28 regional tourism organisations, and the Tourism Industry Association, Tourism New Zealand, the Ministry of Tourism, and the Ministry for the Environment did the evaluation.

The Ministry of Tourism and Ministry for the Environment are planning to run workshops to share ideas and initiatives. The New Zealand Tourism Strategy Implementation Fund funds the project.

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