The notion of a Circular Economy (CE) has been rapidly gaining momentum in recent years due to its potential to align commercial interests and environmental protection. Consequently, CE practices are becoming integral in key public policies as well as corporate strategies across society.
So far, the CE discourse has been largely focused on opportunities for manufacturing industries associated with the production of tangible products and less so on more service dominated industries. However, the concept of a CE refers to the economy as a whole, and there is an important role to play for all actors across the economy, to support, enable and share the benefits of a circular transition.
The travel & tourism industry is an example of a large service dominated industry that has touchpoints with most if not all key value chains and material flows in society and is therefore very relevant to consider for the Circular Economy transition.
Tourism activities are associated with significant positive global economic impacts as well as jobs and revenue creation in local destinations. However, it is also an industry with substantial and increasing negative environmental and social impacts. Travel & tourism was also the first industry to be heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and restarting this industry will have an important role in the post COVID-19 global economic recovery.
To guide a more sustainable development of the industry post COVID-19, this publication (co-authored by Stefan Einarsson and Fabrice Sorin on behalf of the CE360 Alliance) introduces CE key principles and concepts in the context of travel & tourism. The report suggests using the CE as a conceptual framework to inspire a more resilient, sustainable and future proof industry transition.
This publication aims to achieve three core objectives.
First, to start a discussion within the tourism industry on the applicability and opportunities presented by the Circular Economy to private operators in various sectors.
Second, to provide travel and tourism private operators with a solid grounding in CE concepts and applicability to their operations and business transformation.
Third, to offer suggestions to policy makers, regulators and trade bodies on CE inspired policy and business development directions.
We hope that you will enjoy reading this publication and remain at your disposal to further discuss the opportunities the Circular Economy offers to the tourism industry.
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