As tourism rebounds from the COVID-19 pandemic, there still remain a number of uncertainties. After such a long pause in global travel, what will the return of tourism look like? Or perhaps a better question is: what should it look like?
Though terrestrial forests typically get most of the attention, they are not the only ecosystems that possess a natural ability to fight climate change. There are three coastal ecosystems that are also highly effective at sequestering carbon dioxide: mangroves, seagrass, and salt marshes. The carbon that is captured and stored by these coastal ecosystems is known as “blue carbon.” Pound for pound, these blue carbon ecosystems can actually store up to 10 times more carbon than tropical rainforests!
We are currently leading a project to help Palau become the world’s first carbon neutral destination. In doing so, we are mitigating tourism’s carbon footprint, boosting climate resilience, improving local livelihoods, empowering women, and preserving this pristine paradise for future generations.Now, we want to know: which island should be next?
Over the past year, we’ve seen how a global crisis can bring travel to a sudden halt. Though the pandemic remains front of mind, there is another crisis that will bring even graver consequences for humanity and imperil the destinations we love. That threat is climate change.