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A Growing Role for Tourism in Sustainable Development

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The following excerpt is from an article published on DailyFinance, by Tonya Mohn, on the increasingly visible role tourism plays in sustainable development:

Think of environmentally friendly businesses, and you probably think of things like solar power, green building and recycling. But according to a report released last week by the U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP), one of the most promising green industries — at least when it comes to creating economic growth, reducing poverty, fueling job creation and addressing major environmental challenges — turns out to be sustainable tourism.

It’s an interesting conclusion because tourism isn’t generally considered green. But the U.N. report, titled “Towards a Green Economy: Pathways to Sustainable Development and Poverty Eradication,” finds that investing in sustainable tourism could play a big role in creating a green economy. The findings of the report — which includes contributions from the U.N.’s World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), an agency that promotes sustainable tourism development, and economists and experts worldwide — were presented to environmental ministers from more than 100 countries last week in Nairobi, Kenya.

“This is a landmark report. Advancing the sustainable agenda in tourism will allow the sector to strengthen its capacity to continue generating growth and creating jobs worldwide,” UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai said in a statement. “The conclusions of this report corroborate what we at UNWTO have long been advocating for — that the tourism sector can be a lead change agent in the transformation to the green economy.”

To read the analysis of the points made in the UNEP report, please see full article from DailyFinance

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