Archive for the ‘Ecotourism’Category

Panama And California Laying A Path For Sustainability


al 4a 183x300 Panama And California Laying A Path For Sustainability2425 trump ocean club 8 340x255 300x225 Panama And California Laying A Path For SustainabilityThe 9th Annual Global California Panama Conference was held this past Friday in San Jose California. The all day information packed conference was presented by TradePort, United States Panama Business Council – WestGlobalCalifornia.com, Monterey Bay International Trade Association and the City of San Jose. Robert Krieger, President of Krieger Worldwide and a featured panelist described Panama as the next Hong Kong. The new Free Trade Agreement and the fact that the Panama Canal is set to double its capacity  means a boast for Panama, California and the Americas.  Panama is now the largest free trade zone in the Western hemisphere.

Keynote speaker Juan Sosa the Former Ambassador to Panama and current President of United States – Panama Business Council said “the Panama Canal is now operating at 95% capacity. Panama is experiencing double digit growth with only 1% of the population in Latin America. Now as a logistic hub we believe that ports on the west coast, the Gulf and the Atlantic will benefit by our new capacity if they too can upgrade their capacity.” Port of Oakland’s Ron Brown who also spoke welcomed Panama’s expansion as a sign of growth for California.

9th copy 300x225 Panama And California Laying A Path For SustainabilityThe heightened economic activity in Panama is not just  about the canal. Panama City the panama and central america Panama And California Laying A Path For Sustainabilitynation’s capital dubbed “Panhatten” is a dynamic city. Real estate, banking, ecotourism and renewable energy are all poised for growth throughout the nation. Alvaro Cabal Lachman also a panelist and head of USPAW and CEO of Nearshore Development provided key insights on real estate in the country today and in the future. Participating panelists and sponsors  shared valuable insight on doing business in the country. In attendance were representatives of Morgan Stanley, Citibank, FedEx, Panama Pacifo, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Jose Branca, NICE Inc. and US Commercial Service. Daniel Robin a Senior Partner with In3 Finance Group who has worked on agricultural and renewable energy projects and ventures in Latin America suggested that PPA’s (Power Purchase Agreements) could provide an affordable solution to bringing solar energy to Panama. A trade mission to Panama will be held on July 25-27, 2012. By Richard Andrews

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Kenya Using Ecotourism To Save Lions


lions+hunting+safaris+in+the+world++attacks+endangered+animal+species+protection+and+conservation+protection+in+Africa+Kenya+South+Africa+save+the+beautiful+dangerous+animals+attacks+pictures 300x187 Kenya Using Ecotourism To Save LionsThe ongoing struggle for lions to exist against the twin threats of poaching and a diminishing habitation has been brought to international attention through two films – The Last Lions and African Cats. The Last Lions is a National Geographic production which addresses the sobering statistic that there are roughly only 20,000 lions left in the wild in Africa. To put this into perspective, 50 years ago the numbers were close to 500,000, so today’s figure of 20,000 represents a horrifying drop in numbers of approximately 96% – the main cause of the decline in numbers being due to poaching activity. Filmmakers Dereck and Beverly Joubert are passionate on the subject and set out a very strong case to have lions protected by governmental and international accords in the same way that other endangered species such as the elephant are protected. The couple cite the fact that the eco-tourism industry benefits to the tune of billions of pounds each year which should bring with it the moral and financial imperative to protect the animals that tourists want and expect to see.

The Disney nature production African Cats is a sympathetic portrayal of the difficulties facing lions and other big cats and serves to raise awareness of the subject massai09 lg1 1 199x300 Kenya Using Ecotourism To Save Lionsto a wider audience – especially among children (the film carries a U certificate). Both films underline the necessity and the urgency of the work currently being carried out at the Porini Camps in Kenya. Porini safari camps are at the spearhead of the conservation of wildlife. Interaction with local communities is crucial to their success. Porini lease farmland from the Maasai tribes in Kenya and allow the vegetation to recover from over grazing and farming and to become restored as part of the lions’ wider natural habitat. It’s a business model that benefits all parties. The Maasai are employed as wardens and guides as an alternative to farming: Porini safaris benefit from their wealth of local knowledge and tracking skills and the wildlife benefits as poaching is no longer financially attractive because the average wage earned at the camp is 5 times the national average.

Restoring land to its natural state is just part of the conservation work Porini is committed to. Visitors to the camps wanting to contribute to the safeguarding of the area and its wildlife for the future have the unique opportunity of some hands on conservation work.

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Costa Rica Hosts Sustainable Agricultural Forum


bird watching costa rica 300x191 Costa Rica Hosts Sustainable Agricultural ForumLast week, Dole Food Company, participated in the second annual Forum on Sustainability and Happiness in Costa Rica. This year, former U.S. President Bill Clinton provided the closing keynote, delivering a message on environmental sustainability. Dole’s Sylvain Cuperlier, Vice President of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability introduced the Forum’s roundtable on sustainable agriculture. In this introduction, Cuperlier discussed the potential issues related to pesticide use, the need for a more pro-active response to climate change and the requirement to focus further on water use and soil conservation. He also highlighted some challenges specific to agriculture, like how the increasing market pressure on prices can be a constraint when it comes to extending sustainable production practices.

Cuperlier pinpointed some opportunities for collaboration, as well. Participation in multi-stakeholder initiatives aimed at exchanging best sustainable practices, through the Costa Rican platform and the World Banana Forum, was a central focus.”Our participation for the second time in the Forum was a great opportunity for Dole to reaffirm our leadership role in sustainability, while highlighting, with full transparency, the challenges and opportunities our industry can encounter along the way,” said Cuperlier. “These events are so valuable because they bring together some many stakeholders, new and established, to discuss issues that span such a wide variety of companies, industries and regions.”

Vega will further discuss Dole’s sustainability initiatives in the working group on Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture at Business for the Environment (B4E) Global Summit 2012, which will take place May 21-22 in Berlin, Germany. B4E is the leading international platform for dialogue and partnership solutions for the environment. The recommendations from the working groups organized in Berlin will be presented as official business input for decision-makers at Rio+20, the United Nations conference on Sustainable Development, which will take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, at the end of June.

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Nicaraguan Travelers Enjoy Ecotourism Dazzling Views


VB 300x225 Nicaraguan Travelers Enjoy Ecotourism Dazzling ViewsNicaragua, Central America’s hottest (and safest) tourist destination, has unveiled a website feature to make traveling to “the land of lakes and volcanoes” easier. Ready for volcano boarding?The new booking engine on VisitNicaragua.US enables tourists to make reservations for hotels, flights and tours in a simple, direct and easy-to-navigate way. Nicaragua offers visitors an authentic experience that puts them in touch with the country’s vast natural beauty and warmth of its people. Travelers can enjoy ecotourism, adventure tourism and simply relaxation against a backdrop of dazzling colonial architecture; spectacular volcanoes, lakes and rainforest; and pristine beaches on both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts. Central America’s largest country and the safest, Nicaragua beckons with a wide variety of travel options at affordable prices

Among the featured hotels that visitors to VisitNicaragua.US can book are Hotel Casa San Francisco in Granada, Nicaragua’s most popular tourist destination; Marina Puesta del Sol, a luxurious fishing resort on the northwest Pacific coast of Nicaragua; and Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa, in the lively beach town of San Juan del Sur. Visitors to VisitNicaragua.us also can choose from dozens of tours of Nicaragua, including the 4-day “Nicaragua’s Colonial Highlights”  and the 10-day “Magic of Nicaragua”

The new booking engine on VisitNicaragua.us comes on the heels of the new Nicaragua Tourism Facebook page, which recently launched with a vacation giveaway contest. Until June 11, 2012, visitors to www.facebook.com/visitnicaragua can enter the Nicaragua Ultimate Adventure Sweepstakes to win an amazing trip to experience all the unspoiled nature, beauty, culture, adventure and fun that Nicaragua offers tourists.”We are delighted to offer the new booking engine on VisitNicaragua.US as well as the vacation sweepstakes on our new Facebook page,” said Mario Salinas, Nicaragua’s Minister of Tourism. “Both are examples of our commitment to expanding our tourism offerings and to welcoming more visitors from North America to our beautiful country.”

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Ecotourism Can Save Javan Rhino From Extinction


Rhino 7 Ecotourism Can Save Javan Rhino From ExtinctionA public-private partnership set up to save the Javan Rhino from extinction has reported that its goal of increasing the existing population in Ujung Kulon National Park by 50 per cent over five years is making progress – 12 months after the team was set up. The Javan Rhino Conversation Working Group (CWG) is a multi-disciplinary team made up of experts from Ujung Kulon National Park, local NGOs, private sector companies and academics. This week, the CWG reported on its first year in operation. Important steps have been taken to improve protection of the rhino habitat within Ujung Kulon, and cut down on encroachment by local communities and poaching. And video from new camera feeds set up within the rhino habitat has revealed a flourishing community of an estimated 35 individual rhinos, including – critically – several juveniles.

In the long-term, high value eco-tourism could provide the economic framework to allow the number of Javan Rhinos to grow sustainably again.Dr. Ir. Moh. Haryono, M.Si, Head of Ujung Kulon National Park and Chairman of the Javan Rhino Conservation Working Group said:“The video we are distributing worldwide today shows that the battle to save the Javan Rhino from extinction is not lost. There is a small but thriving community of rhinos within the National Park which can grow if the conditions are right.”

Asia Pulp & Paper Group (APP) is one of the main private sector partners within the CWG. Aida Greenbury, Managing Director Sustainability & Stakeholder Engagement of APP, said:“Saving the Javan Rhino from extinction requires a strategic focus on three factors: economic development, social progress and habitat enhancement. In its first year, the CWG is heading in exactly that direction, and we are proud to be part of it.” In the first 12 months, the CWG carried out habitat enhancement and restoration activities for the Javan Rhino, such as vegetation control of an invading plant species Langkap (Arenga obtusifolia) that has overgrown and eliminated plants the herbivore mammal feed on. It has also supported the Javan rhino population monitoring with video traps.The Javan Rhino was once one of the most widespread of the Asian rhinos, with thousands of animals ranging across Indonesia, Myanmar, Thailand and Peninsula Malaysia. Hundreds of years of game hunting during the Dutch Colonial era caused a dramatic reduction in the population. The number of remaining Javan Rhinos continued to decline in the latter 1900s due to illegal poaching for the valuable and rare single horn of the unique animal as well as forest encroachment that resulted resulted in habitat degradation.

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Eco Friendly Travelers Growing Greener


49260 Photo1 Costa Rica lg 300x200 Eco Friendly Travelers Growing GreenerTrip Advisor one of  the world’s largest travel sites today announced the results of its eco-friendly travel survey of more than 700 U.S. travelers. The green travel trend is gaining momentum among TripAdvisor members, as 71 percent said they plan to make more eco-friendly choices in the next 12 months compared to 65 percent that did so in the past 12 months.

Green initiatives are an increasing priority for hospitality businesses that are trying to reduce their environmental footprint,” said Jenny Rushmore, director of responsible travel for TripAdvisor. “Our survey shows that TripAdvisor travelers are interested in eco-friendly practices, but hungry for more information about which green plans and policies are actually in place.”

The travel survey found among other things that twenty percent of respondents said they would consider an “eco-tourism” trip but 17 percent said they are unfamiliar with such trips. Nearly a third of travelers (30 percent) would choose a destination for a trip because it is considered eco-friendly. And this was no surprise, Costa Rica is the most popular destination in the world for travelers interested in an eco-friendly trip. TIES a trade organization founded in 1990 has been dedicated to promoting ecotourism. It defines “ecotourism” is defined as “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people.”

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