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Partnership for regional sustainable (tourism) development Round table discussion seminar Tourism – chances and challenges, Sustainability and Competitiveness.

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Presentation on theme: "Partnership for regional sustainable (tourism) development Round table discussion seminar Tourism – chances and challenges, Sustainability and Competitiveness."— Presentation transcript:

1 Partnership for regional sustainable (tourism) development Round table discussion seminar Tourism – chances and challenges, Sustainability and Competitiveness Nordic House, Reykjavík Feb 15th 2008 Stefán Gíslason MSc Environmental Management and Polciy Environice, Borgarnes, Iceland

2 Contents  Summary  Background  Historical...  A little bit on Green Globe  Monitoring and data  Industry’s opinions  Did they succeed?

3 Summary  Three regions in Iceland have decided to head for a full international certification according to the Green Globe standard for communities.  As an example, 5 municipalities on the Snæfellsnes peninsula in western Iceland have been co-operating on this since 2002, and are awaiting a certification audit in April. If successful, the region will be the first certified in the northern hemisphere!  To gain this, the local governments have entered into partnership with the regional industries, especially the tourism industry, to develop the whole region towards sustainability. This is a prerequisite for the certification.

4 Background Snæfellsnes:  90 km long, 1,474 km 2 (1.4% of Iceland’a land area)  A line of mountains with Snæfellsjökul glacier (1,446 m) furthest to the west as a symbol (“Centre of the Earth”)  A rich diversity – Snæfellsjökul National Park  Five municipalities with a total of some 4.000 inhabitants = Tre “big” fishing villages (ca. 3x1.000 inh.) + farms  Industry: Fishing, agriculture, tourism


6 “Historical” background 1998) The municipality of Snæfellsbær starts working with Local Agenda 21. 2000)The local government approves a Local Agenda 21 action plan => finds out that the municpality cannot do a lot without co-operation with the industries and the neighbouring communities. 2002)Autumn: The municipality of Snæfellsbær invites the neighbouring municiplities to partnership regarding Green Globe certification.

7 2003)Spring: Five local governments (the whole peninsula) sign an agreement to seek a common Green Globe certification. Autumn: The launch of the project, a steering group established with representatives from the local gvmts. (with links to the industries), the national park and some national gvmtl. institutions (Road admin., power company, tourist council) 2004)Autumn: “Benchmarking” achieved (WTM, London, 10-nov-2004) 2005)2006) 2007) Benchmarking renewed 2008)April: Full certification? “Historical” background (cont.)

8 What is GREEN GLOBE ?  Based on Agenda 21. The tourism industry’s response to the challenges of the Rio summit 1992  Formally established by WTTC – (World Travel and Tourism Council) 1994  Originally based on membership  Independent certification scheme since 1999 (the world’s only global certification scheme for sustainability)  The first GREEN GLOBE standard for tourism companies published in 1999  A GREEN GLOBE standard for communities presented late in 2002  A new standard for communites 2003 and companies 2005/2006  Headquartes in Australia since 2003

9 Why GREEN GLOBE ?  International recognition  The only certification scheme for communities  Certifies all sectors of tourism  Co-operation with universities (a strong prof. back-up)  Emphasis on local resources (goods/services/labour)  Based on Agenda 21 and sustainable development

10 From the standard  The outcome is […] a more sustainable Community where the Tourism industry and other sectors are actively underpinning sustainable outcomes.  The Community Standard recognizes the benefits of a community working together to achieve sustainable outcomes. It requires a Community Authority to provide leadership  The Standard is designed to empower local communities and to build on local initiatives.  It deals with environmental regeneration and environmental improvement as well as the conservation of existing heritage assets.

11  The GREEN GLOBE 21 Community Authority shall: 3.6 Have a commitment to individualize environmental and socially sustainable performance accountability to companies, community members and authorities within the Community. 3.9 Have a commitment to give preference to employment, products and services of local community origin. From the standard

12  The GREEN GLOBE 21 Community Authority shall: 5.8 Have regard to the following considerations in developing Community Benchmarking supplementary performance indicators: § Giving preference to locally produced goods and services § Encouraging local employment § Encouraging industry reinvestment in the local community § Minimizing leakage of locally generated revenue § Stimulating local micro-businesses 6.1.7 Encourage Community stakeholders to engage in the Community Authority’s environmental and social programmes. From the standard

13 Regional indicators

14 Presentation of results  Every indicator annually compared to GG “Benchmarks”  Should be above “Baseline”  + continuous improvement  Example -> -> -> -> “Best Practice” “Baseline”

15 A Comment “Three years ago I would have said that all this talking about sustainability was nothing for my company, but just some meaningless costly requirements. But, just operating the company within a community with this positive kind of sustainability profile, has really improved my company’s image among the customers. It’s a privilege from a marketing point of view to have the opportunity to participate in this development”. Ólafur Rögnvaldsson, CEO of the region’s largest fish industry

16 More regions  Two more regions have already started to prepare for Green Globe certification (with Snæfellsnes as a role model)  Álftanes (south of Reykjavík)  Iceland South Central  Still two more are in the early phase, awaiting a formal approval from leading authorities

17 Have they succeeded?  Have they succeeded in estabishing a active partnership between local authorities and the industries for increased sustainability and in creating new opportunities for regional development?  The work just started  There are no absolute indicators/measurements  But the base has been built at least!

18 Conclusion  The regional work at Snæfellsnes is an example of how the industrial development can be managed on a local or a regional level and guided towards sustainability, in order to create new opportunities for regional development  As the ”Green Globe Community Standard” demands an active co-operation between the authorities and the industries, it has the potential to function as a tool/guideline for local/regional co-operation towards sustainability  This opens up for new opportunities for a common marketing of the whole region

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