Incentives for businesses compliant to energy efficiency measures
6 Jul 2011
Businesses in the hospitality industry that comply with responsible tourism practices and energy saving measures will now be incentivised for their contribution. This emerged at the National Greening and Resource Efficiency road show hosted jointly by the National Department of Tourism (NDT), the Departments of Environmental Affairs (DEA), Water Affairs (DWA) and Eskom.
The purpose of the road show was to educate tourism product owners on the importance of using available natural resources (water and energy) optimally and efficiently in their sector. “Tourism Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are more sustainable through being cleaner, more productive and competitive and provide more sustainable and decent employment”, said Bekithemba Langalibalele, Director for Responsible Tourism at the NDT.
Speaking at the road show held in Richards Bay on Tuesday, Langalibalele said the road show would play a critical role encouraging South Africans to continue to use the natural resources optimally and sparingly. He added that although South Africa had survived the load shedding of 2008, it was not yet out of the danger zone and continuous conservation and preservation of natural resources was critical. Measures and programmes have been put in place to assist to conserve natural resources, Langalibalele said.
The hospitality sector was adversely affected by the load-shedding which led to massive holiday cancellations and resulted in a decline in revenue generated by tourism and the shedding of important tourism jobs. At the road show, it was announced that Eskom would continue to engage with establishments on an on-going basis and the ones that have complied with the energy efficiency requirements would be used as models to encourage others to follow suit. Those that complied would be rewarded through competitions.
Tourism has been positioned as one of the six pillars of economic growth by the government. South Africa recorded a 15.1 % increase in tourism arrivals in 2010 and therefore outperformed the estimated global tourism arrivals of 6.7% by more than 8%. A primary objective of the NDT is to retain the economic and social advantages of tourism development and growth while reducing the undesirable impacts on the natural and social environments.
In this regard, the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA), being the custodian of environmental management framework mandate has developed the National Greening framework to drive the greening initiatives in both the public and private sector to ensure that the negative impacts on the environment are addressed. The Minimum Standards for Responsible Tourism that were published in March this year will also play a critical role in ensuring that all stakeholders optimally and efficiently use natural resources.
As part of the campaign to promote and market optimal usage of natural resource, the following other provinces have also been targeted for phase one of the road shows:
27 July 2011 - Polokwane
28 July 2011 - Nylstroom
17 August 2011 - Ehlanzeni
18 August 2011 - Hazyview
5 October 2011 - Knysna
6 October 2011 - Worcester
7 October 2011 - Cape Town
26 October 2011 - Johannesburg
27 October 2011 - West Rand
Enquiries can be referred to:
National Department of Tourism
Tel: 012 310 3310
Cell: 083 758 0553
Department of Environmental Affairs
Tel: 012 310 3198
Cell: 072 188 9216
Issued by: Department of Tourism
6 Jul 2011
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