New sustainability awards programme to be launched at innovators symposium in Grenada next month

New sustainability awards programme to be launched at innovators symposium in Grenada next month 1

Grand_Anse_Beach_GrenadaBRIDGETOWN, Barbados (16 June 2014) –  A new sustainability awards programme aimed at the region’s tourism private sector will be launched at the Caribbean’s first Symposium for Innovators in Coastal Tourism, in St. George’s, Grenada, next month.

The Skyviews Sustainability Awards enable all businesses, irrespective of size, to measure their progress towards sustainability and to create a resilient supporting environment. The programme measures businesses’ impact on biodiversity, energy, waste, water, and social governance with guidelines on how to achieve best practice in each category. It was developed by Skyviews Inc., a Barbados-based business that produces maps and pocket guides of Caribbean destinations.

“We are at a pivotal point in the course of history and the degradation of earths supporting ecosystems. We have before us an urgent call and challenge to adopt sustainable business practices and decouple environmental degradation from economic progress in order to create continued well-being,” said Jessica Bensley, the chief executive officer of  Skyviews Inc.

“We often talk about ‘measuring what matters, therefore the awards data will provide Caribbean governments with vital information on the private sectors’ adoption towards sustainability and provide quantitative data that directs policy and backs rationale for partnerships in order to create climate resiliency,” she added.

The Skyviews awards programme is just one of several innovative Caribbean initiatives which will be announced at the 9-11 July symposium, a partnership between the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the Washington-based Center for Responsible Travel (CREST), Grenada’s Ministry of Tourism, and the Grenada Hotel and Tourism Association.  These include  a new ‘green’ certification programme for holiday homes and several new programmes designed to strengthen Grenada’s recently unveiled Pure Grenada marketing campaign.

Over 40 regional and international tourism experts will speak on various aspects of sustainable coastal and marine tourism at the event where up to 150 participants from across the Americas will explore challenges to the wider adoption of sustainable tourism models. The three-day conference will feature 16 workshops and five plenary sessions that will cover an extensive range of topics.

Delegates will stay in four of Grenada’s leading eco-boutique resorts while the proceedings will be held mainly at St. George’s University.

For symposium details and updates, including how you can participate, visit www.CTOCRESTSymposium.com or contact Samantha Hogenson at CREST at shogenson@responsibletravel.org or 202-347-9203, ext. 414 or the CTO New York office at CTOny@caribtourism.com or 212-635-9530.

The Symposium for Innovators in Coastal Tourism is supported by Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), St. George’s University,  The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the German Ministry for the Environment- funded GIZ-ICCAS Project in Grenada, Puntacana Resort & Club,  The Travel Foundation,  The Ocean Foundation and True Blue Bay Resort.

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