Ministry of Sustainable Development of Montenegro and UNDP through innovative GEF funded project Towards Carbon Neutral Tourism in Montenegro, have identified ways to help country’s transition towards carbon neutral travel by encouraging sustainability and innovation in tourism. Support was granted to 32 investment projects introducing energy efficiency measures and using renewable energy sources as well as to 21 hotels introducing green certification, thus reducing CO2 emissions and helping raise awareness on nature protection and climate change. The project helped establishment of Eco Fund set up as state-owned legal entity that would be financed under polluter pays principle and support implementation of sustainable projects.
Promoting the country’s transition towards low carbon travel & tourism thus enhancing Montenegro’s green reputation on the global market; Maximizing the efficient use of energy and greenfield investments in tourism; Supporting development of low carbon spatial planning and sustainable transport solutions; Introducing carbon offset schemes and other innovative financial mechanisms to compensate for the residual emissions, and to generate additional revenues for climate mitigation and adaptation actions in tourism.
As a driver of sustainable development tourism contributes to all SDG, benefiting economic growth, quality of life, environmental protection, diverse cultural heritage and climate change. Also, harmonizing tourism development with EU policies is one of the milestones of EU accession.
Ø Low carbon tourism regulatory framework which will support environmentally, and climate friendly tourism offer of the country.
Ø Introduction of environmental certification for accommodation capacities upgrading service quality and fostering resource efficiency.
Ø Establishment of GHG emissions monitoring from tourism sector and minimization of its carbon footprint with the target to reduce tourism related emissions.
Ø Support low carbon transport options by designing and implementing smart urban solutions and encouraging transition and embracing of e-mobility concepts.
Ø Eco fund establishment which will finance innovative tourism projects, which actively contribute to climate change mitigation and adaptation, and support introduction of carbon offset schemes.
Ø Raise awareness of the contribution sustainable tourism can make towards development –acting as a catalyst for environmental protection.
Ø Using pop culture to help promote environmental awareness. Five of the major festivals in Montenegro have gone green in 2018, offering a series of sustainable initiatives.
· Thirty two (32) investment projects which implement innovative technologies that will help reduce CO2 emissions in the tourism sector have been supported. Supported projects’ total investment value of around EUR 10 million will result in CO2 emission reductions by 15,343 kt.
· Thirty hotels (30) hotels will be awarded EU Eco Label and Travelife certificates in Montenegro, by the end of 2019.
· Project introduced a set of voluntary carbon offset schemes into tourism industry.
· Technical assistance provided and Eco Fund which will finance future sustainable tourism project established.
· The project uses the influence of pop culture to educate & raise awareness among the general public on carbon footprint and climate change and all major music and film festivals in the country have become green.
· Based on an independently verified methodology for GHG monitoring from tourism sector, the inventories were completed for 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. It is expected that by 2017, total emissions from the tourism sector will be at the level of a baseline 2014.
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