Home | E-Newsletter Issue 67 | Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Label October 2012

Seychelles sees Sustainable Energy in focus this year
by STB

Minister St. Ange and Ms Henri at the Nature Seychelles stand
Nature Seychelles was amongst the many organisations that took part the tourism fair organised as part of activities to mark World Tourism Day. Held at the International Conference Centre, the fair was used as a venue to promote sustainable energy. Seeing the participation of local firms, hotels and hospitality industry, local NGOs and others.

This year, World Tourism Day was held under the theme Tourism Sustainable Energy: Powering Sustainable Development.

Seychelles is making its own efforts to reduce its overall energy consumption and to move on to more renewable sources of energy.

Nature Seychelles used the fair to promote the carbon neutral status of Cousin Island Special Reserve and to share tips on energy saving with fair attendees.

Since 2010, the organisation has embarked on a journey to make Cousin Island carbon neutral. "Simply we are investing in carbon credits to offset our carbon footprint," Kerstin Henri, the Director of Operations explained.

Cousin's footprint was calculated by looking at the island's operations, its visitor footprint - calculated as a percentage of visitor travel to Seychelles (this includes international flights, hotel accommodation and internal transfers) and the carbon absorbed by Cousin's own forest, which was worked out and netted against the footprint.

The final footprint was then offset through the purchase of credits in clean projects in Darfur - Sudan, Brazil and Indonesia and today in Uganda. Fees collected from visitors to the island are used to purchase the credits.

"Making Cousin carbon neutral is an important tool that is helping us to market ourselves and Seychelles in a positive manner, especially to those tourists who are choosing eco-friendly destinations and providers," says Ms. Henri.

Another powerful marketing tool for Seychelles promoted at the Tourism fair was the Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Label, a voluntary sustainable tourism management and certification programme designed to inspire more efficient and sustainable ways of doing business within the industry.