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BTMI hosts climate action workshops, sustainability forum for tourism stakeholders

On Monday, June 27, the second Visit Barbados Stakeholder Forum is set to take place as the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI) launches its focus on sustainable tourism development.

Ambassador H. Elizabeth Thompson, Barbados’ Ambassador Extraordinary & Plenipotentiary with Responsibility for Climate Change, Small Island Developing States and Law of the Sea will be the featured speaker at the stakeholder hybrid forum set to be held at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre and on Zoom.

She will be joined by other experts in tourism and sustainable development, including Jeremy Sampson, CEO of Travel Foundation; Dr. Megan Epler-Wood, Managing Director of STAMP Program in the Centre for Sustainable Global Enterprise at Cornell University; Paloma Zapata, CEO of Sustainable Travel International; and Dr. Jens Thraenhart, CEO of the BTMI.

Speaking on the outlook of the forum, Thraenhart stated that “This forum is important to us as we launch to the public our commitment to ensuring that Barbados’ tourism development will be sustainably driven across the board. Monday will set the stage for the upcoming programmes and initiatives the public will see coming from us as we take tourism forward, responsibly.”

“The forum is actually our second in a series of stakeholder engagements to ensure that we are bringing the entire industry along in our various initiatives,” Thraenhart continued.

“Last week’s focus was Aviation and now we’re addressing Sustainability. Monday’s forum is the perfect launchpad into the climate action workshops we are hosting on Tuesday and Wednesday in conjunction with Sustainable Travel International (STI).”

Those interested in participating in the forum can register on Eventbrite by clicking here.

Climate Action Workshops

On Tuesday, June 28 and Wednesday, June 29, two special climate action workshops hosted by the BTMI and STI will shine a light on the roadmap to net zero. These workshops will aim to accelerate the decarbonization of the island’s tourism operations by engaging a wide cross-section of the tourism sector in carbon removal.

Additionally, STI will assess the tourism carbon footprint of Barbados and develop a customized carbon calculator for visitors and businesses.

CEO of the BTMI, Dr. Jens Thraenhart referred to the workshops as the first step in the goal to create a sustainable tourism model for the island.

“We are working diligently towards creating a model for tourism that will be sustainable in the long run. Collaborative workshops like these help us share information and ideas on how we can put a plan in place to achieve these goals. This is a step in the right direction for Barbados.”

The workshops, which will be hosted at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, will feature six local experts who will share their solutions to food security, food waste, beach and ocean pollution, and access to clean air and water. The workshops will then be followed by field trips that allow participants to see what the experts presented.

Accommodation suppliers, restaurants, DMCs and attractions are invited to the first workshop, which will take place on Tuesday, June 28. The second workshop, which will take place on Wednesday, June 29, will target watersports operators, transportation companies and community entrepreneurs.

Registration for the workshops is open to the public and anyone interested in attending should register at mindfultravel@visitbarbados.org.

Special collaboration with local designer

Building on the message of sustainability, the BTMI has also partnered with local fashion designer, Rhaj Paul, who is known for designing t-shirts that feature inspiring, patriotic messaging. Rhaj Paul has agreed to create a special design to promote the workshops’ ethos of eco-friendly, sustainable living.

The limited-edition t-shirts quietly send the message that love for country means protection of it. They will be on sale at $50 directly from Rhaj Paul, or orders can be placed at mindfultravel@visitbarbados.org.

Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.

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