Tourism ministry pledges to address climate change focussing on travel industry

(source: Unsplash/Aniek Wessel)

Last Updated on Monday, 24 June, 2019 at 2:54 pm by Christian Keszthelyi

The Maltese Ministry for Tourism has agreed with SUNx (Strong Universal Network) to launch a set of actions and opportunities to address the threat of climate change from the travel industry perspective, according to a press statement issued by the government’s Department of Information (DOI).

The ministry with SUNx are aiming to take the lead in a global effort aimed at converting the threat of global climate change into an opportunity. The Global Centre for Climate Friendly Travel will launch measures accordingly. Malta will aim to deliver a number of initiatives designed to support the sector in its transformation, in collaboration with SUNx.

These initiatives and transformations include an annual review of the “Sector Climate Friendly Travel”, which will be published within the context of the United Nations General Assembly alongside the United Nation’s Secretary General’s Climate Action Summit in September and will be circulated widely amongst industry players, as the DOI press statement says.

In addition, an annual Malta Think Tank and a Climate Friendly travel summit are planned, as well as a public/private collaboration to engage graduate trainees to help deliver transformation in the front line, entitled Plan for Our Kids to put 100,000 STRONG Climate Champions across all United Nations states by 2030

“There is a growing international consensus for a strong shift from talk to action. This is amply evidenced by the political action of the European Union in raising the stakes these past few weeks by announcing the allocation of 1 in every 4 euro of the next budget to climate resilience,” said Minister for Tourism Konrad Mizzi. “This initiative will put Malta at the forefront of this change in creating more climate-friendly travel. We will become the home of SUNx — the Strong Universal Network — a global centre for Climate Friendly Travel following the targets of the Paris Agreement set in 2015.”

SUNx Co-founder Professor Geoffrey Lipman noted that “The reality is that we have a Climate Crisis and that the scientists, the governments, and the next generation are demanding an increased ambition. Travel and Tourism is a pivotal part of human activity and has to be at the leading edge of change.”

“Our collaboration with the government of Malta will provide a new impetus through Climate Friendly Travel, Measured, Green, and 2050-proof: a pathway to the New Climate Economy and 100,000 STRONG Climate Champions by 2030 to help the transformation. This is carrying on the vision of Maurice Strong, the father of Sustainable Development, who believed that Travel and Tourism could be a catalyst for positive change,” Mr Lipman added.

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