Calls for a more sustainable industry

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director Emeritus at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) is giving a keynote on climate change at this year’s ITB Berlin Convention. We asked what we will learn from his presentation.

On the one hand, I will summarise how man-made global warming is changing the natural world on which tourism heavily depends – there are no beach vacations without beaches, just to give an example. On the other hand, I will show how tourism itself contributes to climate change and thereby acts in a self-destroying manner.

A PARADIGM SHIFT FROM LONG- DISTANCE TO REGIONAL TOURISM NEEDS TO BE CONSIDERED

What does the industry need to do?

Both in terms of substance and image, the industry needs to switch to a sustainable mode of operation quickly. In particular, the reduction of CO2 emissions from air travel has to be tackled. And it is foolish to bet on even more luxury resorts in flat island states, which will disappear due to a rise in sea level.

How can those in the travel and tourism industries contribute to reducing the problem – presuming it cannot be solved?

Global warming cannot be stopped or even reversed, but it can still be confined to an extent according to the famous Paris Agreement. Sooner rather than later, the tourism industry needs to come up with a “less-than-2°C” strategy. Such a strategy is actually required from all major economic sectors.

Who should come to your keynote?

Since this is about the very sustainability of tourism in a rapidly changing world, everybody associated with the industry should come: top representatives as well as ordinary customers. Not least, because a paradigm shift from long-distance to regional tourism needs to be considered


CLIMATE CHANGE, GLOBAL WARMING, WEATHER EXTREMES: STATUS QUO AND CONSTRAINTS TO ACTION
Category: ITB CSR Day
Date: March 8, 2019
Time: 11am-11.45am
Location: City Cube, Auditorium A3


Photo: Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber Director Emeritus, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)