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World Tourism Organization responding to the challenge of climate change

World Tourism Organization responding to the challenge of climate change (Forimmediaterelease.net) * Climate Change is a universal challenge
* The tourism community has agreed to respond
* Climate response must integrate poverty solutions

The conference “Tourism – Responding to Climate and Poverty Imperatives”, held in the context of ITB 2008, focused on tourism’s role in the global climate response in solidarity with other sectors. As one of the principle services exports in the world’s poorest and emerging countries, tourism has the potential to act effectively on the common cause of climate change response, linking it closely with the fight against poverty.
As the UN agency in charge of tourism, UNWTO is leading the positioning of the sector within the global efforts on climate response and poverty alleviation. UNWTO’s approach matches the road map laid out by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the broader UN System Agenda.
The Davos Declaration Process promoted by UNWTO “urges action by the entire tourism sector to face climate change as one of the greatest challenges to sustainable development, and to the UN Millennium Development Goals in the 21st Century.”
“Climate change response and poverty alleviation are complementary goals. All tourism stakeholders will very soon support concrete consensus measures to address these challenges. Our focus on climate change and the broader development agenda coincides with the active support of the UN Millennium Development Goals”, UNWTO Assistant Secretary-General Geoffrey Lipman.
This is the message presented by UNWTO during the thematic debate ‘Addressing Climate Change: The United Nations and the World at Work’, held in February at UN Headquarters in New York. UNWTO will mobilize its more than 150 Member States and its Affiliate Members in the private and academic community, representing a network of thousands of stakeholders in the tourism family.
World Tourism Day 2008
In this context, this year’s World Tourism Day (WTD) will focus on Tourism’s response to the challenges of climate change. It will be a year long campaign that will focus on increasing awareness of the Davos Declaration Process and encouraging its implementation by all stakeholders at a global level.
In raising awareness on the positive role of tourism in sustainable socio-economic development UNWTO aims to:

* Advance – Tourism in the UN global response to the challenges of climate change and poverty alleviation
* Promote – the Davos Declaration Process for the Tourism Sector
* Encourage – tourism stakeholders to adapt, to mitigate and use new technology and secure financing for the poorest countries.

WTD 2008 will be hosted in Peru on 27 of September and celebrated in all UNWTO member states.
For further details on the WTD campaign, go to: www.unwto.org/wtd/index.php

For further information please contact: UNWTO Media Section T: (34) 91-567-81 94 / (34) 91-567-81 00 / F: (34) 91-567-8218

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