For many of us in the Northern Hemisphere, this is vacation season – a time to take a break, go on holiday, have some fun or just relax. But can we escape to the sea, dessert, mountains or even neighboring towns without leaving a trail of waste and carbon emissions? Is there such a thing as ecologically sustainable leisure travel? The signs for such a possibility are encouraging: options and resources for these getaways are expanding faster than ever.
Travel-related businesses are beginning to realize that shortsighted tourism development can result in pollution, loss of natural resources and irreparably damaged ecosystems. All of these ultimately affect tourism. Travelers are catching on as well: in a recent survey conducted by TripAdvisor, a company that provides on-line travel recommendations, nearly 40% of travelers said that environmentally-friendly tourism is a consideration when traveling. The same survey revealed that 34% of travelers are willing to pay more to stay in an environmentally-friendly place.
Join us as we explore the topic of ecologically sustainable travel and vacation. We begin by chatting with Brian Mullis, president and co-founder of Sustainable Travel International. Brian provides information and a hearty heaping of hope for the future of eco-friendly, sustainable travel.
Are you curious about how deep a carbon footprint your summer vacation will leave? Figure it out in advance with a carbon calculator. Traveling with the kids? Turn off the portable DVD player for a while and let them broaden their minds with some eco-friendly games.
The resources section of this issue is loaded with links to help you plan an ecologically sustainable vacation and find environmentally responsible lodging, transportation and travel services.
Finally, learn how we incorporated ecological restoration in an eco-tourism plan for Delaware City, Delaware. As always, we want to know what you think. Share your thoughts on Leaf Litter by contacting our editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.