People, Travel

UNWTO: Tourism Can Help Preserve Biodiversity

UNWTO: Tourism Can Help Preserve Biodiversity
UNWTO: Tourism Can Help Preserve Biodiversity

Just a few weeks ahead of launching the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, which will be celebrated throughout 2017, the UN World Tourism Organization underlined in Cancun, Mexico, the need for devising national policies and frameworks for promoting sustainable tourism.

Sustainable tourism helps protect biodiversity and foster multi-stakeholder partnerships, the UNWTO said.

With the objective of advancing the contribution of tourism sector to biodiversity preservation, UNWTO is participating in the UN Biodiversity Conference COP13 (2-17 December), reported. 

The conference is focused on mainstreaming biodiversity across relevant sectors, especially agriculture, fisheries, forestry and tourism.

 “Tourism and biodiversity are natural allies and UNWTO is fully committed to its joint work with the Convention of Biological Diversity. Tourism can highly contribute to the protection of biodiversity by raising awareness, by engaging the tourism community and by proposing sustainable alternatives for local communities,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai at the opening of the conference.

Erick Solheim, executive director of the United Nations Environment Program, said, “Tourism is one of the biggest job creators on planet Earth. So if we protect biodiversity, we are creating jobs."

Speaking at the same event, Braulio Ferreira, executive secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity, said, "I want to thank the World Tourism Organization for the work they have done in the area of biodiversity."

The participation of UNWTO in COP-13 included the side-event "Tourism, Business and the Environment", which addressed strategies to promote tourism experiences that can be both sustainable and profitable, creating opportunities for local communities.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints