Today, and for the foreseeable future, everything we do will be broken down and analysed in terms of its environmental and social impact on the world in which we live. Travel, particularly air travel, is often criticised as an unnecessary luxury that we should avoid unless absolutely essential.
So what types of travel are ‘essential’ and essential to whom?
Responsible tourism in developing countries helps sustain and support local communities and environments which otherwise may have little or no way out of the poverty trap. Responsible management of safari camps, game parks and reserves is essential for protecting the world’s most fragile ecosystems and some of its most at risk inhabitants. Sadly, it’s likely that without the money brought in from overseas visitors, many of Africa's animals would by now have fallen foul of poachers or had their habitat destroyed to make way for farms and settlements. What may well be a fun trip for you makes a huge difference to the local people and wildlife it supports.
How does it help the people?
We have carefully selected all of the properties we use for their environmental and social responsibility. We are not a charity, however we do feel that we have an obligation to act as responsibly as possible without ‘green-washing’ the issues. Many of the properties we support are owned by private individuals who actively help support the development of the communities in which their property is located. Their projects may not be big on a global scale, but they have immeasurable benefits on a local level. Typically, projects involve schooling and health care for local adults and children alike.
We also work closely with a few selected conservation groups. These groups can have a much wider effect - often protecting huge areas of land and conserving the wildlife within.
How does it help the wildlife?
The safari industry is like all others and has a vested interest in protecting the wildlife and environments that support it. All of the camps we use operate a low volume high yield policy to reduce the impact of visitors to an area and still manage to raise the necessary funds to protect it. Many of them go further; embarking on everything from breeding programs to animal censuses. We believe that these projects are of huge importance and we try to play our part by supporting them.
We do not promote activities with captive non domesticated animals and believe that an authentic wild experience is infinitely superior, giving the animals the space to swim, run or walk away if they choose and behave as an animal should. The only exceptions we make to this are those projects directly involved in promoting animal welfare, such as breeding programs and sanctuaries. All of these projects are regularly scrutinised to ensure that there is no ill treatment of any kind.
Unfortunately there is no denying that air travel produces huge volumes of CO2 so what can be done?
The world is divided. Some believe that we should offset our CO2 but others argue that this distracts from the real goal of reduction. Unlike some of our competitors we still offer our clients the option of offsetting the CO2 emissions from their flights (see details below).
We believe that people should offset their CO2 but should equally be aware that this does not create a ‘free pass’. Offsetting is a temporary solution and people need to continue to push for global reduction in their carbon emissions.
Climate Care is a service that reduces greenhouse gases on behalf of individuals and organisations, to compensate for their impact on the climate. It does this by ‘offsetting’ the greenhouse gases – such as CO2 - emitted from your activities by reducing an equivalent amount of CO2 on your behalf.
These reductions are made through a range of projects in sustainable energy technologies that not only fight climate change but can bring widespread benefits to communities around the world. You can offset emissions from flying, driving and household energy use.
A return flight to Tanzania from London covers 9243 miles and will use 2.10 tonnes of CO2.
This can be offset via Climate Care for around £18 per passenger.
Either follow the link below or ask us to include this option on your behalf.
To find out more visit: www.jpmorganclimatecare.com