Sustainable, environmentally-friendly travel that makes as little impact on a destination as possible has a growing movement for decades.
Now, we are in the golden age of eco-tourism. So much so, many commentators say what once may have appeared a fad, is here to stay.
The team here at Snap are well on board with eco-tourism, adding Teslas to our fleet of low-emission vehicles. We also like to keep our fingers on the pulse of other eco-activity in our tourism sector, so have scoured the planet for the new shape eco-tourism has taken in 2017, and where it looks to be heading in 2018.
Using Biofuels to get there
This article on Medium talks about how initial travel to a destination is still “a painpoint” for eco-minded traveller.
Tourism accounts of 5 percent of global emissions, the bulk of that from air travel. Some airlines have joined the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group dedicated to developing and commercialising sustainable biofuels.
Choosing one of these airlines is a great start, another option is choosing routes without layovers to reducing the time spent in a fuel-burning aircraft.
And of course, if driving is an option – use it. A road trip is much friendlier to mother earth than flying (and way more fun).
Choose to travel with gear that not only looks great, but is great to the planet, too. There are packs with solar panels in them for gadget charging, like these Birksun solar bags; clothes made out of recycled plastic; reusable non-plastic bottles, containers and bags; bamboo toothbrushes – the list goes on (and is sure to keep growing).
Using animals instead of machines and products
It sounds very pre-industrial revolution, but we are not talking about horses ploughing fields. No, instead animals are being recruited to roam freely, eating bugs, trimming back crops and fertilising the grounds as they go.
Machines which do this are heavy and push the oxygen out the soil, which impacts its quality. So why not call on the animals instead?!
Ducks are used in rice fields and vineyards in Japan, Chile and South Africa – and Matetic Vineyard in Chile will open next year using llamas and chickens.
In Botswana, elephant dung is also being used to build tourist accommodation.
Plastic bags be gone
Kenya not only banned plastic bags this year, but they introduced the heftiest fines IN THE WORLD for anyone who breaks the ban.
The country joined more than 40 others who have also banned the evil plastic bag, but those who dare manufacture, sell or use them in Kenya will face up to four years in prison and fines of more than $40,000.
It is no secret that plastic is horrific for the environment, takings generations to decompose and sending harmful chemicals into the ground as it does so. Not to mention the problems it causes when it hits the waterways – suffocating sea creatures and forming vast underwater masses.
The more countries that ban bags the better, and we reckon we’ll see even more take action.