Posted by: lc on May 08, 2004 - 05:45 PM
Europe leads the way in developing policies and actions in sustainable development and is the leading continent in ecolabelling (this is the branding and assessment of products which raise environmental standards and represent the highest environmental quality products).
In the tourism industry Europe has led the way in ecolabelling accommodation and other services and within the VISIT organisation the different national and regional labels will further elaborate their cooperation .
The main labels representing the highest standards of reliability have forged an alliance based on mutual understanding and agreeing to adopt a common standard. This will allow the labels to reach a wider audience, ensure that tourism ecolabelled products are credible and provide a unified approach to tour operators, the industry and the consumer.
“As a group the VISIT member ecolabels represent different nationally based ecolabels in tourism accommodation, operating in over 10 countries with over 1500 certified tourist accommodations”, said Torben Kaas, the newly elected Chairman and representative of the Green Key in Denmark.
Vice Chairman Luigi Rambelli, from Legambiente in Italy added “The founder labels have been working together to create a common framework for co-operation and mutual recognition. This work has been supported by the EU LIFE programme and further partners and has resulted in the production of various guides, a web site and a promotional campaign”.
Secretary of the VISIT-organisation is Harro Boekhold who represents the Dutch Ecolabel, the Mileubarometer and the Treasurer is Jonathan Proctor from the Green Tourism Business Scheme in Scotland and the UK.
The secretariat function is provided by ECOTRANS, who has been instrumental in helping nurture the new organisation and manage the VISIT project which highlights all the labels involved.
Next steps of the VISIT-organisation involve:
• Developing promotional campaigns with national and international tour operators
• Upgrading the VISIT web site and connecting the data systems more closely
• Establishing a verification system for member ecolabels and testing it in practice
• Developing further common tools for member ecolabels such as in benchmarking and promotion.
For further information, please contact:
VISIT European Association of Tourism Ecolabels
Board: Torben Kaas – Luigi Rambelli – Harro Boekhold – Jonathan Proctor
Secretariat: ECOTRANS e.V
D - 66111 Saarbrücken
Phone: +49 681-374679
Fax: +49 681-374633
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