Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in the Tourism Sector

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"This document forms part of the “ UNEP Manuals on Sustainable Tourism” and the UNWTO sustainable tourism policy guidebooks publication series, aiming to provide guidance to tourism stakeholders to integrate sustainability into their decision making processes and operations. It presents an overview of the current science and policy of climate change, followed by self-guidance material on mitigation and adaptation, exploring tools, methods and techniques associated with the management of climate change in tourism. It also identifi es examples of good practice from which stakeholders might learn in order to develop their own capacities for implementing climate change strategies. ‘Capacity’ is the ability of individuals, institutions and organisations to perform functions effectively and sustainably; it is not a passive state but part of a continuing process (UNDP, 1998). Capacity building consists of three basic elements (Alaerts, 1991):

  • Creation of an enabling environment with appropriate political and legal frameworks;
  • Institutional development, including community participation;
  • Human resources development and the strengthening of managerial


This publication, coupled with a comprehensive international and regional seminar series is designed to provide a pragmatic platform to strengthen the capacity of professionals to understand and respond effectively to the global challenges of climate change in tourism destinations. The publication and the seminars focus on capacity building and practical adaptation and mitigation techniques, including tools and methods to address the problems and meet the challenges posed by climate change. It is expected that this will result in the facilitation of tourism stakeholders’ efforts to integrate the mitigation of and adaptation to climate change, into broader institutional, policy and national goals and programs in a practical manner. Building the capacity of the tourism sector will enable countries and destinations to implement the Davos Declaration (UNWTO-UNEPWMO 2007a) recommendations and so address the threats, challenges and opportunities of climate change."


  1.  "Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in the Tourism Sector"