A significant number of tourism operators rate sustainability as being important to their business, according to the the results of the World Travel Market (WTM) 2014 Industry Report released this month.
Of the 1,229 UK industry executives surveyed, 86 per cent said they perceived sustainability to important to their business. Ten per cent said that sustainability is of central importance to their business, 40 per cent responded that it is very important, 36 per cent rated it as quite important, and 14 per cent said it was not very important, or not important at all.
The WTM survey also discovered that more than 60 per cent of respondents said that responsible tourism will increase over the next three years.
The report also identified that one third of UK holidaymakers say they consider responsible tourism when booking a holiday.
The report highlighted the work of one of the world’s largest travel firms TUI Travel, as an example of embracing responsible tourism.
TUI Travel has ranked fourth in the FTSE 100 UK companies for its carbon reduction implementations using carbon management company Carbon Clear.
TUI Travel have implemented initiatives such as a target to limit water usage to 400 litres per guest, and a cap of 24kwh of energy per guest per night by 2015. TUI Travel are closing in on those targets, having achieved a reduced water usage from more than 500 litres in 2011 to 470 litres, and energy decreases per guest from 26kwh in 2012 to 24.3kwh currently. Industry wide general water levels per guest are as high as 1,000 litres per night.
TUI, Group Director of Sustainable Tourism, Jane Ashton said in the WTM Industry Report, “Most hotels can save 20 per cent on water and 10 per cent on energy without much upfront investment.”
WTM says sustainable tourism has become an integral part of the group since launching Environmental Awareness Day in 1994. WTM says the results of the survey show that travel firms are increasingly placing sustainability on their agenda.