Saturday, October 31, 2020

Future of ecoutourisme in France (and elsewhere in Europe)

 "The phenomenon remains difficult to quantify, however, since there is for the moment no body that manages to classify rigorously what falls under ecotourism, to define the sector, its exact perimeter, and to measure it", explains Jean-Marie Boucher, CEO of consoGlobe, the Internet portal for sustainable development. Difficult to distinguish therefore, especially as a number of related concepts such as responsible tourism, ethics, fair trade etc. confuse the issue a little more.

France ecotourism

Between social trend and fashion phenomenon

But, deep down, is this green tourism really worth taking an interest in? Isn't it just a simple fancy ?

Not so sure ... "This is more of a fundamental trend that is running through society," said Françoise Riera-Dabo, founder of FRD Conseil, consultant in trends and brand strategy.

There is a growing awareness in society that the planet cannot be allowed to deteriorate. That if we continue like this, we are going straight into the wall.

This is a gradual, diffuse awareness, but it will become more and more important to take it into account. "Tourism surveys for 2020-2030 indicate hypotheses where certain parts of the territory are invaded by water and therefore ... no longer usable for tourism," she adds.

For sociologist Jean Viard, research director at CEVIPOF (Center for Political Research at Sciences Po) and author of numerous books on tourism, ecotourism is "between the fashion phenomenon and the phenomenon of anxiety". “The sector is being seized by this logic of sustainable development, but it is obvious that there is a contradiction between the ecological objective and tourism itself.

Traveling thousands of kilometers by plane to spend a week in China for pleasure is, in itself, totally unecological.

Basically, the best way to do ecotourism is to stay at home! "" I mainly believe in sorting waste, saving energy (...), but I do think that this will become the norm. This will even become, in the long term, an exclusive concern and the hotels which will not have adapted will remain on the side of the road. "

"In my opinion, this is a fundamental trend that is turning into a fashion phenomenon", considers Jean-Marie Boucher. “As with all fashions, I think that we will see things flourish, witness an inflation of the offer, with the danger which is to put green labels everywhere, but that once fashion is a little fallout, something solid and lasting will remain. The offer will have been permanently reoriented towards greener products, which will have taken an increasing place in the overall tourism offer. "


In any case if you go to France please get a good travel insurance, they call this an " assurance voyage " . merci !

Sunday, January 12, 2020

How to spot for a Green Hotel?

Hi Readers,

Following up from the previous blog post, here are some useful tips on how you can judge whether a hotel is green or not.

#1: Check for Green Labels

Starting from the most straight forward method, try to spot for Green Labels on the hotel's official website or publications. These Green Labels are often awarded by independent third party organization and thus, have already evaluated the hotels subjectively, saving you the trouble. Some examples of Green Labels include: Green Key, Green Globe and EarthCheck, which is a partner of
Source: Google images

#2: Look out for green practices

In some cases in which hotels might not display their Green Labels distinctly and publicly, it is best if you look out for environmentally friendly policies that are implented by the hotel. Here are some examples:

Recycling bins

These bins are usually placed at the hotel lobbies and facilities sites like the swimming pool. Do try to spot them the next time you visit a hotel!

No-smoking policy
To ensure high air quality for all its guests, some hotels would impose a no-smoking policy on its premises.

Linen reuse option

Do not be surprised or offended if you happen to see such signs in your room. Some hotels place such signs in their guest rooms to encourage guests to indicate whether they would like their linens and towels to be washed daily. The primary purpose of such practices is to conserve water through reduced laundry.

Bulk Soap and amenities

These bulk dispensers play a huge part in saving the environment by reducing the amount of individual packaging materials required. Many of you might not also realise the wastage of soaps and shampoos involved if these products were distributed in individual packaging; unused products would have to be eventually thrown away after every guests' stay.

Organic food
Organic food may generally refer to food that are produced without using chemical fertilizers and pesticides, which are mainly harmful to the natural environment due to contamination of ground water. Some hotels have actually taken steps to grow their own vegetables and fruits in an eco garden, to ensure that ingredients used in the hotel's restaurants are fresh and thus provide healthy benefits for its guests.

#3 Incorporation of hotel design and eco-friendliness

Feel free to contact the management of the hotel to enquire on the degree in which eco-friendly designs have been integrated into the construction of the property.

Some hotels have attempted to do so by using green roofs which acts as a natural heat insulator and reduces room temperature within the building.

Nowadays, it is also a common practice for hotels to install equipment that generates alternative sources of energy and water such as solar panels to create heat and water treatment systems that treat collected rain water.

#4 Involvement with staff and the local community

There is no point in designing the hotel to be environmentally friendly if the staff does not execute the green policies. Thus, it is the hotel's responsibility to train its staff on being green as they are the ones who will be managing the operations of the hotel. The employees of the hotel can also uphold the "green values" by encouraging guests to conserve water and energy.

Being green could also mean giving back to the local community of the area that the hotel is situated at. The hotel can do this by supporting local food produce, as well as highlighting the local art and culture to its guests. It can also help the needy through charity drives.

Lastly, hotels may opt to be involved in conservation projects, to protect the natural surroundings of the place. This is especially so for hotels and resorts that have beaches or tropical jungles located in proximity to its premises. Examples of conservation projects include beach clean ups and restoring of homes for the fauna and flora.

Hopefully, this post helps to clarify any confusion of what a Green Hotel really is.

Here's the links of hotels that has rated this week; do feel free to browse through them as we continue to introduce and rate more green hotels daily.

Reserva Ecologica Pachijal
Napo Wildlife Center
Piedra Blanca Ecolodge
La Selva Jungle Lodge
Hotel Patio Andaluz
Kapawi Ecolodge
Sonaisali Island Resort
Maritim Hotel Berlin
Creativhotel Luise
Maritim Hotel Dresden
Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten
Radisson Blu Hotel Berlin
The Regent Berlin
Maritim Hotel Frankfurt
25hours Hotel Frankfurt By Levi's
Barcelo Cologne City Center
Maritim Hotel Köln
Steigenberger Parkhotel Düsseldorf
Novotel Hong Kong Century
Novotel Hong Kong Citygate
Novotel Shanghai Atlantis
Hotel Alexandra
Sankt Helene Holiday Resort
Maritim Bonn
InterContinental Berchtesgaden Resort
InterContinental Berlin
InterContinental Düsseldorf
InterContinental Frankfurt
InterContinental Hamburg
Flamboyant Hotel & Villas
Le Parc aux Orchidees
Eco Hotel Uxlabil Atitlan
Novotel Hyderabad Airport
Udayana Lodge
Novotel Bali Nusa Dua Hotel & Residences
Novotel Bandung
Novotel Bogor Golf Resort and Convention Center
Novotel Lombok
Novotel Semarang
Novotel Solo
Novotel Yogyakarta
Locanda della Valle Nuova
Novotel Milano Malpensa Airport
Novotel Milano Nord Ca Granda
Novotel Venezia Mestre Castellana
Viva Wyndham Maya
Viva Wyndham Azteca
Hotel en Ixtapa
Barcelo Huatulco Beach
Barcelo Tucancun Beach
La Puertecita Boutique Hotel
Novotel Mexico Santa Fe
Scandic Sanadome
Novotel Hamilton Tainui
Novotel Queenstown Lakeside
Hotel Novotel Auckland Ellerslie
Novotel Capital Wellington
Novotel Rotorua Lakeside

Signing off,

Monday, July 1, 2019

Ocean Clean-Up has finally begun !

A great ecological project has now become a reality as the Ocean Cleanup deploys its $20 million system designed to reuse and recycle the ocean plastic.

Here is the latest photo:

The floating boom system has been deployed from San Francisco Bay and will undergo several weeks of testing before being hauled into action. The system was designed by the nonprofit Ocean Cleanup, which was founded in 2013 by 18-year-old Dutch inventor Boyan Slat. Their mission is to develop "advanced technologies to rid the world’s oceans of plastic."

The floating boom system, with the help of dozens of more booms, is estimated to clean up half of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch within the first five years. Each boom will trap up to 150,000 pounds of plastic per year as they float along the currents between California and Hawaii.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Can waste become a commodity ? The Chinese case study

Waste has emerged as China’s biggest environmental challenges. The country faces a solid waste treatment backlog of around 60-70 billion tonnes, putting it under huge pressure to boost recycling capacity.It has already launched a scheme to create “waste-free cities” and is building hundreds of “comprehensive recycling bases” across the country. But firms complain that China lacks the infrastructure and waste treatment habits required to create a profitable business.

Image result for china waste

We all know China closed the door on recyclable materials last year and will again tighten up by 2020. 
The aim is to block imports of all waste products that could be sourced domestically. Qiu Qiwen, director of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment’s solid waste division, said products not included on the banned list would also be restricted by next year, but high-quality material would still be accepted.
“If the solid waste ... meets the requirements of China’s import standards and doesn’t contain any hazards, then it can be treated as common commodities, not waste,” he said.

more here: Waste as a Commodity 

Monday, December 17, 2018

Recycling plastic into ... roads

A Tasmanian government body has found a very unique way to recycle single-use plastics and other landfill-bound waste by building a new road. 

173,600 plastic bags and packaging, 82,500 glass bottle equivalents diverted from landfill, Toner from approximately 5,900 used printer cartridges and more than 33 tonnes of recycled asphalt were  repurposed to create the 330 tonnes of asphalt used to construct a 500-meter long road along Charlton Street in the town of Snug, outside the city of Hobart.

It's the first road of its kind in the Australian state. Great example to follow.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Singapore International Water Week 2018 : debrief

The summit was in its 10th anniversary, with more than 24,000 people in attendance discussing the next Water Challenges

"Water is for sure the next big question mark; Australia is the driest continent in the world. Its population is growing strongly and 85 percent of it is living less than 50 kilometres from the coast. Where will the additional future water supply come from if not from the sea? " asked Roch Cheroux, chief executive officer, SA Water

Cities took centre-stage in the event ; more details here

More details at the Official Website here:

His Excellency Ranil Wickremesinghe, Prime Minister, Sri Lanka delivering the keynote address. Image: SIWW

Friday, August 17, 2018

Green Travel: Wacky Eco-Friendly Accommodation

If you’re planning your next vacation, but also want to give the environment a break, why not try a luxurious yet eco-friendly holiday? For those travellers who like the finer things in life, rest assured knowing that you’ll still be staying in some of the most luxurious facilities around the globe, while reducing your carbon emissions and environmental footprint. To get you started, be sure to check out these amazing eco-friendly accommodation options.

Gorilla Safari & the Masai Mara, Uganda

If you’re looking for something that’s just a little bit different during your next holiday, why not take the adventure of a lifetime through breathtaking Africa. The Gorilla Safari and the Masai Mara Tour sees travellers experiencing various camp accommodation sites across Africa. The eco-friendly tour company which runs this amazing adventure prides themselves on giving back to nature in every way they can. Starting from the very beginning, their offices in the UK have implemented conservation and recycling programs to greatly reduce the waste produced, as well as their overall impact on the environment.
Once the tour begins, guests will be greeted by local leaders and dine on food from local suppliers, which helps to keep a valuable source of income where it is needed – in Rwanda. Spending your journey camping, you can rest at night knowing that you’re taking a step in reducing the energy consumption of travellers.

Rainforest Resort Byron Bay, Australia

Located in the lush surrounds of tranquil Byron Bay, on Australia’s magnificent east coast, travellers would expect nothing more than eco-friendly accommodation at its finest. While environmentally conscious guests will enjoy the eco-friendly advancements of this hotel, they can still enjoy the finer things in life. The secluded one and two bedroom cottages are equipped with reverse cycle air-conditioners, with eco-inverters, perfect for keeping cool or staying warm, while still reducing your footprint. A qualified remedial massage and healing therapist is also available at the resort, perfect for eliminating any nasty toxins to assist in rejuvenating your body.
For international travellers, the easiest way to access the rainforest landscape of Byron Bay is by car. If you are hiring a car from the airport, be sure to check out Australian holiday packages options, in order to find the best combo deals for flights, accommodation and car hire.

Dyfi Forest Tipi &Yyurt accommodation, Wales

So, you’ve stayed in cottages and eco-friendly resorts, but you still want to get that one step closer to nature? Well, this if the green travelling adventure for you. Dining on organic fare and indulging in holistic therapies, travellers will spend their evenings in countryside tipis, amongst a large organic farm in the Dyfi Forest. This carbon neutral accommodation option has been voted as one of the best eco-friendly destinations in the world.

Whether you’re searching for the adventure of a lifetime or a relaxing retreat, you can do it all by travelling green. Say goodbye to carbon emissions and unnecessary energy usage, as you take a positive step for travelling for the future.