Blue Mountains City Council, in partnership with Ecotourism Australia, is offering up to ten local tourism businesses financial and marketing assistance to help them achieve ECO Certification.
ECO Certification is a way for local tourism businesses to demonstrate to visitors that the high quality, nature-based experiences they offer are backed by an industry-certified commitment to sustainability.
Over the past few decades, travellers around the world have become increasingly aware of the environmental and social impacts that large scale visitation can have on tourism destinations.
With this heightened awareness has come an increased demand for ‘Eco-Tourism’ destinations which aim to reduce the carbon footprint of not only visitors, but of the tourism industry itself.
In support of this trend, Blue Mountains City Council and Ecotourism Australia are offering the following benefits and incentives to up to ten local businesses who are interested in gaining ECO Certification:
- A $500 cash subsidy to offset the first annual Certification fee.
- One to one business coaching through the certification process.
- Listing and promotion on Green Travel Guide once the business is certified.
Successful businesses will also join an established global network offering visitors an easy way of finding genuine and authentic ecotourism experiences.
In September last year, Blue Mountains City Council announced that it was joining the ECO Destination Certification Program with a view to establishing the Blue Mountains region as an ECO Destination.
Mayor, Cr Mark Greenhill, said: “This program has huge benefits for our community in that it will help us promote our region as a destination for environmentally aware visitors. Programs such as this will assist the community to strike the right balance of growing our local economy without sacrificing our environment – or way of life.”
Blue Mountains City Council CEO Dr Rosemary Dillon said: “Becoming an accredited ECO Destination supports our Vision of a more sustainable and successful Blue Mountains. I strongly encourage any interested tourism business owners to get involved with this exciting initiative.”
Expressions of interest in the scheme open on 15 June 2021 and close on 30 June 2021.
A 30 minute virtual information session, hosted by Ecotourism Australia, will be held on Monday 17 June from 5 – 6pm. To connect via Zoom link for the information session or to apply for the scheme go to: bmcc.nsw.gov.au/ecotourism.
Photo: Visitors view The Three Sisters from Echo Point, Katoomba at sunset.