At the plenary session at the International Institute for Peace Through Tourism (IIPT) Symposium in Johannesburg, the President of the International Coalition of Tourism Partners (ICTP), Geoffrey Lipman, thinks peace through tourism is driven by regional and sectoral perspectives, and is a war we can win.
He feels the issues in the world are getting more complex and there are great challenges in coexistence. It might get increasingly more difficult to travel and the economy could be getting even tougher. He feels this is a hump to get over. We have a war that everyone can acknowledge is happening, and this war is about sustainability. One issue is climate resilience – we must come to terms with that. Our industry is failing badly and is not in the same position as other industries. What will happen when bush fires become semi permanent and flooding increases? 1% of the world’s population have 90% of the wealth, and there is something drastically wrong with this. There needs to be inclusive development.
There is a need for Green Growth. Over the next ten to fifteen years, if we don’t deal with the issues like unemployment, we won’t be able to sustain the tourism that is being talked about. We must start using cleaner energy like solar, wave and wind, and less oil and coal. We need to build new frameworks that include people and harness the internet so the energy can meet the needs of a growing population. We need a conservation mentality if we’re going to survive as a species. This means massive change and trillions of dollars.
There needs to be a shift for every country in the world. Nothing can go forward if we don’t fix climate. All of our infrastructure is under threat. 2015 will be pivotal. Green Growth has to come down to a community level, and need to start thinking in global ways.
A few summits are upcoming that address some of this, such as shifting funds from rich countries to poor ones, SDG’s and also on carbon targets. These targets will become enforceable by 2020.
We have been guilty of oversight. You can’t manage anything that you can’t measure, such as the impact of various things on tourism. The next generation will have to deal with this. If you don’t start controlling the engine before it’s too late, then it’s too late. We need to show the impacts with the benefits.
The ICTP Vision
The Sun Project
This deals with the concept of green growth and travelism and includes:
Sunark – a solar powered 20 Meter squared building that instantly starts generating power for a community. It should also be a learning center; a strong university network should be there.
Sun-Connect – cloud connected with global access, local linkage and civic resources LED. It will be driven by the Internet and run by sharp young people. It should be TV white space enabled.
Sun-Community – Local bottom-up, global and national, and takes in the views of NGO’s.
Beyond certification programs that build education and learning in. How can it be put on mobile phones, because that’s how people will be looking for solutions and systems. They are seeking sponsors, engaging partners and creating pilots. They are working with the Vanilla Islands of the Indian Ocean to make this group of islands a prototype for this type of thinking.
Prof. Lipman ended his speech with the message, “Act Now.”
Source: eTN Global Travel Industry News