SLOW LIFE Symposium 2011
Progressive solutions for future tourism
- 1. Surviving Climate Change
• Sonu Shivdasani, CEO and Chairman of Soneva Resorts
• President Mohamed Nasheed, President of the Maldives
• Mark Lynas, Oxford Climate Associate
Maldives is aiming to be the world’s first carbon-neutral country, not just for its own sake
but to show others that the technologies exist to make this transformation and are costeffective.
Eventually the Maldives will save more than $100million a year in oil imports.
Progress is already being made in designing a plan for this, and various proposals are
already there for wind and solar projects. However, some areas are exceptionally
challenging to decarbonise, especially marine transport and aviation. Offsets will be
necessary for these in the medium term. In international terms, the Maldives is arguing
that all countries should be accelerating their efforts to tackle climate change, whatever
their level of development. Indeed, less developed countries have a big opportunity
never to get hooked on fossil fuels in the first place.
Leadership for a Low Carbon World
• Jonathon Porritt, Founder Director of Forum for the Future and Former Chairman
of the UK Sustainable Development Commission
Surviving climate change is not just about disruptive low carbon technologies. It’s also
about changing mindsets, building global networks, mobilising communities and
individuals to bring the politicians on board. The leadership already shown by the
Maldives has a crucial role to play in that process
Powerful future! – The Role of Renewable Energy for a Steadily Increasing Global
• Stefan Schurig, World Future Council
There are severe global impacts of climate change. However, there are opportunities to
limit these impacts. Energy consumption is today a major contributor to climate change
and plays therefore a key role in limiting negative impacts if changed from fossil fuels torenewable. The positive outlook is that one can create wealth and jobs from renewable
energy update. Sustainable energy production is key particularly in remote areas.
However, there are dangers such as Biomass to Liquid – is it a blessing or a curse for the
- 2. Profitable Climate Solutions
Solar and Wind
• Lounette Dyer, Six Senses
Renewable energy technologies such as wind and solar are beginning to enjoy adoption
in developed countries largely due to attractive feed-in tariffs. But as solar photovoltaic
prices continue to decline, “grid parity” will be achieved and will enable wide adoption
in emerging markets. Solar energy will no longer be a luxury of developed nations but
rather will be a necessity of developing nations to deal with rapid energy demand
growth to support economic growth. In parallel with the adoption of wind and solar utility
scale projects, scientists and engineers are working on dozens of new technologies that
could materially change the way we generate and distribute energy. These new
technologies include evolutionary technologies such as wave and tide generation, as
well as revolutionary technologies such as space-based power stations, solar
photovoltaics you can make for pennies in villages, and fuels from algae that are
produced where you need them. This presentation will present the current state of the art
technologies, and will describe future technologies and evaluate their feasibility.
The Solar Revolution: A Report From the Inflection Point
• Jeremy Leggett, Solarcentury
The manufacturing costs of solar photovoltaics are coming down steadily. They are
cheaper today than retail electricity in some markets, and by mid decade will be
cheaper than today’s electricity in most developed country markets. Meanwhile, of
course, the price of polluting electricity is on the way up. Once the two trend lines cross
over, people will be amazed at how fast solar and its sister low-carbon technologies can
invade traditional energy markets. Investors increasingly understand this, judging from
relative capital flows in energy investment. The sister technologies will include storage
technologies, and via plug-in hybrids, transport technologies. But we will need to
overcome the vested interests and the “only big energy will do” thinkers – or enlighten
them – if we are to get to the promised land.
Investing in Clean Energy
• Eric Scotto, Akuo Energy
Fossil fuel energy produces climate damaging carbon emissions and the costs are high.
As it is non-renewable prices will continue to rise and eventually reserves run out.
Renewable energy on the other hand will be available forever, at a lower and lower cost
and without adding carbon emissions. There are different state policies to support clean
energy investments. It is important to understand this in order to financially participate to
the development of renewable energies and to make best use of it.
Low Carbon Profits in an EcoResort – Looking Beyond Energy
• Anthony Michaels, Proteus Environmental Technologies
The challenge of sustainable tourism and the opportunity for better economics from a
green resort operation can be explored as a complex system of interactions among
energy, water, food, waste, materials, behaviour and nature. Since this wider framework
also touches many different elements of a guest’s visit, it offers a large palette of new
opportunities to also enhance the full guest experience. In addition, many of the best
sustainability options also have a significant positive impact on the bottom line and a
variety of rates of return. Every sustainability implementation that gives a greater return
than the normal investment expectations of the company could be implemented rapidly
with the social values as a free benefit. This prioritized list can then be expanded to
implement less profitable opportunities that have correspondingly greater social value or
appeal to the hotel guests or values of the owners. The result can be a blending of
better profits through sustainability with better sustainability through a fully informed
exploration of options.
- 3. The Living Building Challenge
Economics of Low Carbon Financing
• Mike Mason, Climate Care
Committing the Maldives to a carbon neutral future may be seen either as a visionary
move, or a folly – especially given the current global economic situation. The talk will look
at the economic logic behind this commitment, and how different ways of managing
the transition to carbon neutrality could dramatically affect the economic outcome. It
will look at all the various timescales, from distant future (in tourist industry terms) to the
very short term – and at both the costs of delivering carbon neutrality and the costs of
not delivering it. Finally it will propose some constructive solutions to make the transition
to carbon neutrality as painless as possible for Maldives resorts.
Sustainable, surplus-energy-tourism facilities
• Professor Manfred Hegger, HHS Planer + Architekten AG
What does “sustainable building” mean in relation to hotels and to tourism facilities?
How do we plan and produce sustainable buildings for tourism?
How can we evaluate and audit sustainable hotels and tourism facilities?
Can we provide reliable self-sufficient tourism facilities producing their own energy,
possible also feeding local community energy networks?
The beauty of sustainable buildings is reality.
Masterplanning of Large-Scale Eco-Resort Destinations
• Miguel Ruano, Miguel Ruano Associates Ltd.
Scale is critical when addressing the challenges posed by the massive number of tourists
looking for vacation resorts around the globe. The challenge cannot be addressed
through the development of small isolated eco-resorts – this will not suffice. A different
approach and innovative thinking are required to develop entire eco-resort destinations
which can accommodate large numbers of visitors and yet safeguard the natural
environment and local communities.
Case Study from India
• Sanjay Prakash, Sanjay Prakash & Associates Pvt. Ltd.
Banjaar Tola tented camps on the river Banjaar, near Kanha National Park, India is
spread over 60 acres. The camp is situated across the Banjaar river edging the Kanha
National Park and regularly plays host to a variety of wildlife from across the river. The
river is used as a watering place by animals, notably by one of the largest population of
tigers in India. In the first phase, the property has two camps situated along the river,
ensuring a grand view yet providing a feeling of total privacy. Each camp has nine
tented rooms and shares common facilities like dining, lounge, swimming pool and spa.
All buildings have a very light footprint. They are raised structures supported at only a few
points on the ground, allowing continuity to the natural undergrowth and drainage. No
wilderness project leaves the ecology untouched, albeit in ever so slight ways. This
project seeks to maximize the positive impacts on the local environment with a minimum
ecological footprint. It seeks to let nature repair itself, and replicate the spirit of
stewardship with which such travel needs to be undertaken in these last preserves of our
Live The Deal – Changing Travel and Tourism for the Green Economy
• Professor Geoffrey Lipman, UNWTO
Travel & Tourism industry needs to understand that climate change is a reality and that it
has to change and adapt for the Green Economy. Companies need to understand the
complex world of carbon reductions and align their action for sustainable growth.
Keynote Speech – The future of travel and tourism in a world of climate chaos
• Jakob von Uexkull, World Future Council Foundation
In a world of climate chaos the future of travel and tourism is uncertain. One thing for
sure is that the travel and tourism industry will have to adapt and consider climate
change in order to survive. There are plenty of challenges, but not all are problematic.
Some actually provides the travel and tourism industry with opportunities, and the
companies that adapt the best will succeed.
Global Sustainable Tourism Trends
• Costas Christ, WTTC
We are in a global paradigm shift where sustainable tourism is no longer a niche market,
but is driving change across the travel industry and opening new markets for business
growth. This presentation will present an overview of the evolution of sustainable tourism
and current global trends in what may be the most significant transformation in the
history of modern travel, where sustainability is increasingly becoming a important part of
a company’s business profile.
• Chris Gorell Barnes, BLUE Marine Foundation
Climate change is having a huge impact on the ocean. Adding to this, the world wide
fisheries are depleting the oceans with superior fishing techniques. Unfortunately, these
effective fishing techniques often destroy the marine life. Many fish species are severely
threatened and one can expect the oceans to be empty in 40-50 years time if today’s
practices continue. However, there are options, but one has to act rapidly.
- 4. Improving Transportation Footprint
Financing the Low Carbon Economy
• John Pontin OBE, The Converging World
The Converging World has created a model which facilitates carbon finance into
renewable energy projects that contribute to social and environmental development.
One of the biggest barriers to reducing CO2 is the lack of finance into sustainable
solutions. A range of options exist including offsetting, donating and investment and
through The Converging World individuals and organisations can help reduce CO2 cost
effectively where communities and the planet benefit together. We have limited time
and limited budget for the world to address these issues and as Lord Stern said, “We must
reduce CO2 however and wherever it is most cost effective to do so”.
Airline Industry Actions to reduce its Carbon Emissions
• Jonathon Counsell, British Airways
The airline industry face carbon emission challenges and an overview of united aviation
industry position to address its carbon emissions will be presented as well as the industry
activity leading up to COP 16 in Cancun, Mexico – December 2010. Of practical
examples, an overview of British Airway’s actions to reduce its carbon footprint will be
− Operational Efficiencies
− Technology including new aircraft acquisition
− Alternative fuels including project to build biomass to liquid plant in London
− Use of effective market based measures