Like Beth Hutchison of VisitScotland said last week; “Sustainable Tourism isn’t just about being green”.
Social, economic, cultural and environmental benefits don’t equal just green.
It now looks like major hotel investors, development banks and think tanks are thinking the same way and assessing the true benefits of tourism to destinations. Trying to work out individual tourism developments’ full sustainability ‘footprints’.
The IDB has now released a sustainability scorecard for private sector tourism projects to ensure that the IDB’s investments in private sector tourism projects maximize social, economic, cultural and environmental benefits for local communities and destinations.
Said the IDB “Tourism is an important source of employment and revenue in Latin America and the Caribbean, and a widely acknowledged contributor to sustainable development and poverty alleviation with a potential regional income in 2009 of US$217bn”
The Scorecard will allow the Bank to assess the sustainability of private sector projects that request IDB financing and give priority to requests that demonstrate potentially positive impacts.
The Scorecard was developed on the basis of the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. It includes 52 criteria and their corresponding indicators grouped into five sections: effective sustainable management practices; socioeconomic issues; cultural heritage issues; environmental issues; impacts on the tourism destination; and real estate activities associated with the tourism project.
We understand that more and more development agencies and banks are reviewing hundreds of billions of dollars of current and future hotel and tourism investments in the light of this major move towards comprehensive tourism sustainability.
The IDB is inviting comments and suggestions regarding the Scorecard, at www.iadb.org/tourismscorecard,
There will be a six month public consultation period that will end in November 2009.