Tourism and Biodiversity

UNWTO strives to promote tourism development that supports, in equal measure, the conservation of biodiversity, the social welfare and the economic security of the host countries and communities.

UNWTO, through the UNWTO Consulting Unit on Biodiversity and Tourism, a unit funded by the Federal Government of Germany, were involved in providing expertise and advisory support to national and local governments of the countries hit by the tsunamis in 2004 and 2006, to assist in redeveloping their tourist infrastructure. One of the initial programs was in the district of Phang Nga, on the Andaman coast in Thailand which was heavily hit by the 2004 tsunami. The other project site was in Pangandaran (West Java) in Indonesia which was devastated by another tsunami in 2006.

The UNWTO Consulting Unit also provided inputs for cross-cutting issues such as energy efficiency, tourism security and climate change. These sectors have a direct impact on tourism and vice versa. The "Program for Energy Efficiency in Kho Khao" (PEEK) was launched by the Consulting Unit in Thailand to mitigate the effects of climate change. More details on the projects can be accessed by following the links below.

In addition the UNWTO Consulting Unit have implemented projects in Central Europe and with UNEP for the Carpathian Convention.

Tourism in the Carpathian Convention
UNWTO was approached by UNEP to assist in the development and finalization of a Strategy for the Future Tourism Development of the Carpathians and of a Tourism Protocol under the Carpathian Convention. The first official meeting of the Carpathian Convention Working Group on Sustainable Tourism (WGST-CC) was held in Rytro, Poland in September 2010.. Together with Carpathian stakeholders, UNWTO will also work on tourism and biodiversity related projects, such as a marketing scheme for biodiversity-based tourism products called “Via Carpatica”.