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Award-winning tourism

Silva Semadeni, National Councillor and president of Pro Natura, awards the CIPRA Switzerland Prize to Kaspar Howald and Cassiano Luminati (right) of “100% ValPoschiavo”. © CIPRA Switzerland

Tourism too has its success stories. Innovative projects in the Alps are drawing attention. A national park in Germany now shows that sustainable tourism can also bring economic benefits.

Swiss parks are renowned worldwide for their best practice and sustainability as regards tourism. At the beginning of April 2016, the parks network was voted as one of the top three from a total of 160 candidates in the “Destination” category at the international “Tourism for Tomorrow Awards”. “Environmentally-friendly access via public transport, the marketing of regional park products and the national co-operation with PostAuto or Coop all obviously impressed the experts”, enthuses Tina Müller, tourism manager for the Swiss parks network.

CIPRA Switzerland has now for the first time awarded another prize for sustainability in tourism at the national level. Of the various submissions, two Swiss projects collected the prize money of 5,000 francs: “100% Valposchiavo” advocates enhancing the status of regional agricultural produce in the tourist offering and the tourism marketing of the Valposchiavo area. The second prize went to the “Café Greina” for its valuable contribution to regional value creation. The Pamirlink association in the Tajik Pamir region received the solidarity prize, which goes to projects from the global south and is worth 2,000 francs.

Sustainable tourism is also a major topic in Germany. The Federal Office for Nature Conservation has thus issued two guides: the first focuses on how tourist destinations can make themselves more sustainable and thereby consider the relevant ecological, economic and social aspects; while the second, entitled “Faszination Natur erlebbar machen”, makes recommendations for the development of interesting offers for experiencing nature.

A current case study on the regional economic effects of tourism by the University of Würzburg in Germany also presents the regional economic effects of the Berchtesgaden national park. The Bavarian Minister of State Ulrike Scharf is delighted that the national park secures up to 600 jobs and praises it as an economic success model.

Sources and further information: www.wttc.org/tourism-for-tomorrow-awards/winners-and-finalists-2016/ (en), www.cipra.org/de/cipra/schweiz (de), www.bmub.bund.de/N52889 (de), www.bmub.bund.de/N52890 (de), www.nationalpark-berchtesgaden.bayern.de/medien/pressemitteilungen/2016/index.htm (de)

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