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Why the travel industry MUST act on climate disaster

The travel industry is this amazing beast that cannot be broken — even by a global pandemic. And why? Because we are driven by a passion for the beauties of this planet and the people who inhabit it. It is that passion that we have ridden through these most terrible of times. But now we face a far greater threat. 


“The travel and tourism industry is at the front seat of the climate disaster,” James Thornton, chief executive of Intrepid Travel, warned delegates at the ABTA (The Travel Association formerly known as the Association of British Travel Agents) travel convention in Morocco.



“Change is required as soon as possible. 


“The reality is, there is no vaccine for climate change. 


“We won’t have a world to show our customers if we don’t tackle climate change.”


Intrepid is one of the first carbon-neutral tour operators, and Thornton is urging the travel industry to prove its commitment to sustainability with “rapid decarbonisation” to avoid a climate disaster, the Guardian reported. 


According to Thornton, of the 3,547 private companies that have committed to reducing carbon emissions through the Science Based Targets initiative, only 74 were tourism and hospitality businesses and, of those, only 29 have had their targets approved.


“Travel cannot meaningfully address climate change by talking about how important it is and how committed we all are. We really need concrete actions. And we need them now. Otherwise, it’s just greenwashing – and we see that in travel all the time,” he said.


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Published: 14 October 2022

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