European countries score high in sustainable tourism promotion and practices

Published on : Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Few European citiesA new report has highlighted the performance of ten countries with regard to promoting sustainable tourism practices.

France and Germany were the best performing countries scoring 70s out of 100. These countries have developed a set of defined policies, targets and monitoring on the national level. The UK bagged the third spot with a score of 62 while the other countries fared at around 46.3.

Sustainable practices were assessed across five categories: political and regulatory environment, environmental sustainability, socio-economic sustainability, economic sustainability, and travel and tourism industry.

Tourism contributes about 5% to global greenhouse gas emissions and supplies more than 10% of the world’s GDP.  The level of tourism in a country can also have a negative effect on local prices, congestion and air quality.

According to Dr. Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the UNWTO said, “We are finding now that there are many destinations around the world, such as Venice, Barcelona, Amsterdam and others, where people are saying ‘Enough tourists; we don’t want any more’.”

Sustainable tourism has been defined as the creation of an industry which ‘preserves or enhances a country’s social, cultural or environmental capital’. However, there is lack of available data and inadequate implementation of policies. While some countries have passed laws to ensure that tourism is linked to conservation, there is no monitoring or enforcement.


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