Ixtapa joins Huatulco as one of only two EarthCheck Certified destinations in the Americas, enhancing the regions position as leaders in Sustainable Tourism.
For over a decade, the Fondo Nacional de Fomento al Turismo (FONATUR) and EarthCheck, have worked together to strengthen the sustainable development of world class destinations. First with Huatulco in 2005 and now with Ixtapa, FONATUR has received EarthCheck Silver Certified Status which confirms the destination’s dedicated efforts towards sustainability. The process has been led by their Green Team, Equipo EcoZanca, and key tourism stakeholders such as Barceló Ixtapa Beach, Azul Ixtapa and other EarthCheck members.
As part of their efforts towards sustainability, Ixtapa works towards reducing their waste through initiatives such as the Azulita Project and has implemented management strategies for the efficient use of energy and water resources. In addition, they have implemented environmental and social policies and constantly engage with the community in conservation efforts. Following EarthCheck’s mantra ‘you can’t manage what you don’t measure,’ EarthCheck’s benchmarking tool has provided Ixtapa with quantitative indicators to measure and monitor key sustainability aspects such as the Destinations’ energy and water consumption, community contributions, CO2 (Carbon) emissions and waste production.
“We are immensely proud to receive this certification and even more so to be the second destination in the Americas to do so. EarthCheck’s Standards are approved by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), which has enabled Ixtapa to be recognized by the GSTC, representing an extraordinarily strong commitment to sustainability policies and practices. This achievement is a clear demonstration of how government, the private sector and local communities can work together to deliver significant benefits to the world in which we live.”
“FONATUR has driven sustainable practice in the Mexican tourism industry and has forged a vision of respect for nature conservation in Integrally Planned Centres, to promote tourism, help strengthen the local economy and promote local traditions and culture.” Said Héctor Gómez Barraza, FONATUR’s Director.
In 2013 Mexico’s President, Enrique Peña Nieto, set an ambitious target to be achieved by 2050; reduce carbon dioxide emissions by half from 2010 levels. Destinations participating in sustainability programs such as the EarthCheck Sustainable Destinations program, will help achieve this objective and catapult Mexico into the position as the number one most sustainable country in the world.
“Since data started being collected in 2003, EarthCheck member organizations in Mexico have saved enough energy to power 405,721 households per year,” explained EarthCheck Ambassador, Erica Lobos. “They have also reduced water consumption enough to fill 281 Olympic sized pools, dramatically reducing pressure on natural resources in a country that is familiar with the unforgiving effects of drought.”
CEO and founder of EarthCheck, Mr. Stewart Moore, stated that Mexico can be regarded as a sustainability pioneer within the Americas, because its businesses and tourism officials have demonstrated a strong commitment to sustainable development.
“Ixtapa has confirmed its position as a true worldwide leader in responsible tourism, and a genuine source of inspiration to the international tourism community. Ixtapa is choosing to apply the highest possible standard for environmental benchmarking and certification to their destination. In doing so, they have demonstrated their commitment to responsible tourism practices.” continued Mr Moore.
“Our research indicates that 73 per cent of consumers want to know about the sustainability of a destination. Saying you have a sustainable and pristine destination is not good enough. It is important that independent scientific research provides evidence to support your hard efforts.” added Mr. Moore.
Ixtapa are doing just that.