SEATTLE, WA (November 30, 2023) – Today, Sustainable Travel International announced they are adding an “Innovative Tech” category to their Climate Impact Portfolio. This addition allows tourism stakeholders to support emerging climate solutions, such as carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technologies, alongside well-established approaches like forest conservation and renewable energy.
According to the IPCC, reducing emissions alone is not enough to address the climate crisis and reach net zero. To limit global warming to 1.5°C, we must also remove up to 16 billion metric tons of CO2 per year by mid-century. That’s more than double the amount of carbon emitted by the United States in 2021 alone. Achieving this removal will require a combination of nature-based solutions like reforestation, as well as new technologies and innovations. The need for carbon removal is particularly relevant to the travel industry since aviation emissions are particularly hard to abate. Even optimistic scenarios forecast that 30% of aviation emissions cannot be eliminated by 2050, meaning that carbon removal is essential to achieve the industry’s net zero goals.
Sustainable Travel International’s Innovative Tech category will initially focus on CDR technologies that do exactly this by capturing carbon from the atmosphere and storing it away. This could include nascent methods like ocean alkalinity enhancement, biochar, and direct air capture among others. While these early-stage projects are currently more expensive, it’s important to fund them to help them scale up so they become more prevalent and affordable.
Sustainable Travel International’s Climate Impact Portfolio allows travelers, tourism companies, and corporate travel managers to maximize their impact by spreading their climate contributions across a diverse mix of projects. By bundling innovative technologies with familiar, cost-effective solutions, stakeholders can support a range of project types that address climate change from different angles – all for a fixed, affordable price. With the newest category, Sustainable Travel International’s portfolio now consists of the following four types of climate projects:
- Forests: Protect standing forests from destruction, employ forest management practices that increase carbon stocks, and regenerate degraded forest ecosystems.
- Energy: Reduce fossil fuel use by generating renewable energy, improving energy efficiency, or eliminating the need for fuel.
- Blue/Teal Carbon: Conserve and restore coastal and freshwater ecosystems, such as mangroves and peatlands, that act as carbon sinks.
- Innovative Tech: Offer novel approaches for greenhouse gas reduction or removal, but are still in early stages of adoption and not yet widely available.
“To tackle the climate crisis, the tourism industry needs to embrace every viable solution, from transforming our power sources and protecting nature to switching to sustainable fuels and utilizing innovative technological carbon removal,” said Paloma Zapata, CEO of Sustainable Travel International. “Creating deep emissions cuts within one’s own organization and life is an essential part of the equation, but this must be complemented by a drastic increase in financing to support climate innovation and collaborative action.”
To support the Climate Impact Portfolio, tourism stakeholders can purchase carbon offsets via Sustainable Travel International’s online carbon calculator or launch a carbon offset program for their business. Those interested in learning more about the latest CDR technologies and their role in tourism’s net zero journey can join Sustainable Travel International’s upcoming webinar, “Cleaning Our Skies: Innovative Solutions That are Removing Carbon From the Air,” on December 7.
For more information, please contact [email protected].
Media Contact: Kaitlyn Brajcich, Sustainable Travel International – [email protected]
SUSTAINABLE TRAVEL INTERNATIONAL
Sustainable Travel International is a social enterprise dedicated to protecting and conserving our planet’s most vulnerable destinations. We are transforming tourism’s impact on nature and people by working alongside local communities, engaging travelers and businesses in responsible practices, and strengthening destination management. Through our work, we aim to safeguard nature, combat climate change, and empower communities to preserve the integrity of destinations around the globe. To learn more visit www.sustainabletravel.org.