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Guiding Principle #2:

Use Sustainability Standards

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Respect the publicly available, internationally approved minimum criteria for sustainable tourism practices maintained by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) for both industry and destinations.

Arrived at by extensive international consultation and cooperation, the GSTC Criteria provide the minimums for protecting destinations and the people who live and work in them. They serve as basic guidelines for destinations and tourism businesses that wish to become more sustainable. The GSTC Criteria indicate what should be done, not how to do it or whether the goal has been achieved. Performance indicators help do that, along with educational materials, tools for implementation, and help from numerous NGOs and private businesses who specialize in sustainability and improved destination stewardship. The GSTC Criteria constitute the basis for sustainability certification, which can help travelers identify sound sustainable tourism destinations.

Real life examples:

  1. The mountain town of Vail, USA has both designed the Actively Green program and the Mountain IDEAL standard and is a certified mountain resort destination. 

  2. Sustainable Travel Mersing in Malaysia uses the Global Sustainable Tourism Council  Destination Criteria to guide its work. The goal for the destination is to become certified as a sustainable destination by 2025.

Further resources:

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