Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt’s Red Sea Resort last week became the second Earth Lung destination of the world, an initiative in which Sri Lanka is heavily involved.
Egypt’s Minister of Tourism, Zoheir Garranah declared the commitment of Egyptian Tourism and said “Following the initiative of Sri Lanka, we are happy to join the Tourism Earth Lung Community with our resort destination, Sharm el Sheikh, committing to work towards becoming a carbon neutral destination in the future".
According to a Sri Lanka Tourism (SLT) press release, this declaration was made at the opening of the UN World Tourism Organisation supported Conference for the Middle East and Mediterranean Region on the theme “Tourism: Responding to a Turbulent Economy and Changing Climate” in Egypt.
Moderated by Prof. Geoffrey Lipman, Assistant Secretary General of the UNWTO, the Conference’s curtain raiser was Gold Award winning singer and Sri Lanka’s Tourism Ambassador, Alston Koch. flown in especially by the UN WTO. With the song “A Land Like No Other; A Tourism Earth Lung”, Alston captivated the audience where the rendering was supported with backdrop visuals of catastrophe of the effects of climate change, mixed with natures wonder’s in Sri Lanka, aimed at inspiring citizens of world to work together to minimise the causes for global warming, the release said.
At the session on Climate Solutions, Renton de Alwis of Sri Lanka Tourism related the story of Sri Lanka’s efforts at mitigating climate change with the launch of the “Earth Lung Initiative” at the UNWTO conference on ‘Tourism and Climate Change’ in October last year in Davos, Switzerland. Sri Lanka Tourism has since taken on a pioneering catalytic effort on a 10-year agenda to work towards being a carbon neutral tourism destination.