Green Globe 21 came out of the United Nations’ 1992 Earth Summit at Rio de Janeiro where 182 Heads of State developed ‘Agenda 21’ based on the principles for Sustainable Development. It provides a pathway to sustainable travel and tourism for companies, communities and consumers and as of 2004, there were participants in all continents and approximately 50 countries.
In response to growing consumer demand for ‘environmentally friendly’ accommodation, Green Globe 21 is a certification program responding to the major environmental problems facing Australia and the rest of the world, including the greenhouse effect, overuse of freshwater supplies, destruction of biodiversity and production of solid and biological waste.
The standard of facilities, cleanliness and maintenance offered by a three STAR rated motel is well understood. ‘Green STARS’ does not change the original STAR Rating but it does add a guarantee that the property has also met certain ‘green’ standards to reduce the environmental impacts of their business without compromising guest satisfaction or comfort.
Energy efficient electrical appliances and fixtures such as compact fluorescent lamps, a waste recycling program and optional towel or linen replacement are just some of the services guests choosing a Green STARS property can expect.
AAA Tourism in association with Green Globe has launched a Green STARS program, the idea being to encourage properties to embrace good environmental practice in their businesses so they receive a Green STARS rating to add to their competitiveness and save on operating costs. The rating system is based on the accommodation’s performance in a number of areas including energy efficiency, waste minimisation and water management. For more info see www.greenglobe21.com and www.aaatourism.com.au.