A Sustainable Future for Manu

Launched in 2010 to assist communities in the Amazon to start their own sustainable enterprises, The Crees Manu Project has helped to alleviate poverty, combat malnutrition, fight climate change and protect the rainforest. Standing beneath the canopy of a pristine rainforest is to experience life at its most exuberant. The Amazon Rainforest, otherwise known as the “The Lungs of our Planet” accounts for around 20% of earth’s oxygen, and there is a need to preserve this beautiful natural ecosystem.

Trees in the Amazon Rainforest

Despite a growing awareness of the importance of the Amazon rainforest, it is still under huge threat from logging, mining and burning. Huge areas have been destroyed, poverty is rife in the region and 60% of the children suffer from malnutrition.  The Crees Foundation was set up to combat these challenges; their goal is to reduce poverty and protect the biodiversity in the Amazon rainforest.

Macaws in the Peruvian Amazon

With the help from the local community leader Reynaldo Ochoa, shown in the above video,  and the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University, Crees has created a model that enables the community to benefit from the rainforest in a sustainable way. Reynaldo Ochoa is an inspiration to the people of Manu and to us all in how to lead a sustainable life. For the past 20 years he has dedicated his life to finding new ways of living in balance with his environment. By encouraging farmers to plant trees and enabling families to grow fresh organic produce he is helping to forge a sustainable future for the region. Help and funding has helped them with their work over the last three years, however, their funding is set to end in March 2013. Despite all the work they have done, there is a lot more to be done.

With ongoing donations to their project, they hope to:

  • Build biogardens with local families to combat malnutrition using sustainable practices
  • Plant agroforestry plots with local farmers where native Amazon trees are planted alongside banana crops. This is a sustainable wood and crop production alternative, which conserves surrounding forest from logging activity, and protects species biodiversity
  • Build knowledge and capacity through one to one training and workshops on small enterprises, sustainability and resource management

Inkaterra is an association that pioneers ecotourism and sustainability throughout Peru, and the Crees project’s values and mission reflect those found at the heart of the Inkaterra brand. Just like Crees, Inkaterra’s mission is to promote excellence in conservation and biodiversity. Their vision for the future is focused around supporting the local environment in which it operates. The guides across each property strive to improve the lives of the local people and the sustainability of Peruvian nature.

Inkaterra began research and conservation programs over 35 years ago at Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica. To bring this into further tuition, Inkaterra created Inkaterra Association - an NGO that is devoted to the biodiversity conversation of the unique ecosystems where Inkaterra works. Through the ITA, 15,000 hectares of rainforest at the low basin of the Madre de Dios River are protected every year. It doesn’t stop there. Their education programs enable the local people, the guides and interpreters and the guests that visit, to learn about the enormous wealth of biodiversity in the cloud forest and the tropical Amazon rainforest, the archaeological sites and the living cultures which assure their “Peruness”.  

To read more about the project click here. By donating you will help generate positive guardians of the forest, ensure sustainable development for the people of the Manu Biosphere Reserve, and enable the Crees Project to develop and continue on the path of success that they have already set out to achieve. The Amazon is vital for the existence and future of all human beings on our planet. It’s time for us to do something about it.

World Tourism Day 2012: Sustainable Energy through Powering Sustainable Development

Today is World Tourism Day! As long ago as 1979 it was decided that 27th September would be designated World Tourism Day, and it has been a celebrated event the world over since then. This year’s theme is focused around Sustainable Energy, something that is at the heart of everything we believe and do here at Inkaterra. The purpose of World Tourism Day is to foster awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value. With the outlined global challenges highlighted in the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, World Tourism Day hopes to contribute to driving the tourism industry towards reaching these specific objectives.

This year’s theme was chosen with the aim to highlight tourism’s role in bringing the world towards a brighter energy future. With energy efficient upgrades to aircrafts, and energy technology solutions being a focal point across hotels, more than ever, the tourism industry is understanding the benefits of helping to protect the environment, both for the world around them, and for their image. This initiative also plays a role in ending ‘energy poverty’: an ill being addressed by the 2012 United Nations International Year of Sustainable Energy for All, which aims to ensure universal energy access, significantly improve rates of energy efficiency and double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix by 2030.

At Inkaterra we strongly believe that we all need to change our behaviour as individuals, as countries and as a global community. We all contribute to the environment; so we all need to be part of the solution. Since 1975, based on a principle of respect, we have outlined key goals to adhere to, in order to preserve the beautiful world in which we live. Energy consumption is an important concept that we strive to achieve at all of our Inkaterra properties. At each of our locations there is an employee responsible for managing and monitoring energy (as well as water, waste and other sustainability-related activities). Inkaterra has a strict energy consumption policy, and employees are required to attend training sessions and lectures to make sure they are constantly up-to-date with information.

The official celebrations for World Tourism Day will be taking place in Maspalomas, Gran Canaris, Spain, however, Inkaterra will be making sure they celebrate in Peru! From everyone here at Inkaterra, we hope everyone has a great World Tourism Day. Never stop travelling and discovering the beauty of the world.

Educational Travel Community: Opening doors to Open Minds

As part of the Educational Travel Community’s commitment to advancing responsible tourism, the Educational Travel Community (ETC) hosts an annual Responsible Tourism Conference. This is to recognize the efforts of it’s members and their partners working diligently in the field to develop and implement responsible tourism initiatives. 

Educational travel facilitates deeper, more enduring connections between travellers and the communities they visit through strong interpretation, experiential programming, and meaningful engagement. The Educational Travel Conference is the world’s only travel industry meeting to bring this exclusive group of professionals together, under one roof, for several packed days of outstanding educational sessions, keynotes, and collegial roundtables designed to address a variety of critical and timely topics, as well as skills workshops, networking opportunities, and special events.

Inkaterra are pleased to announce that they have been awarded a 2nd place Honoree award from the committee for their efforts towards Responsible Tourism and education, which will see them receive a cheque for $1000 at the awards ceremony in Orlando early next year. This money will go towards enhancing the current efforts that Inkaterra take in order to pursue an educational experience for both workers and guests alike.

Inkaterra have several programs in place that aid in educating the local communities at each of their properties. At Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica there is continual training practices in place for the Inkaterra interpreters or guides who are kept ready to teach about the enormous wealth of the biodiversity in the cloud forest and the tropical Amazon rainforest, the archaeological sites and the living cultures which assure their “Peruness”. Inkaterra also actively support the development of the Science and Environment curriculum in the local community school of Madama, located near the Inkaterra Reserva Amazónica lodge, in the district of Las Piedras, as also at the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel. Guests are included in the educational programs also, with programs in place to create awareness and education on biodiversity and archaeological sites to guests staying in the Inkaterra chain of hotels.

Inkaterra believe in benefiting and helping the local communities in which they operate as much as they can. By encouraging the development of local communities, taking into consideration their environment and culture, Inkaterra hope to assist in helping Peru towards a educated, sustainable and brighter future.

Inkaterra First Peruvian Hotel Chain to Win Green Choice Sustainable Tourism Award

Peterson Control Union Green Choice Sustainable Tourism Standard is the first Green certification approved by the Dutch Accreditation Council (RVA)

 

January 20th 2012. – With the presence of the Minister of Tourism and Commerce, José-Luis Silva, Inkaterra received the First International Certificate in Sustainable Tourism given by CU Green Choice Sustainable Tourism Standard. During the ceremony, the Minster highlighted the importance of the award given to a Peruvian tourism organization such as Inkaterra, which has focused on ecological conservation since 1975. He mentioned: “It is an honor that a Peruvian hotel chain is the first organization worldwide awarded with such an important Certification.” Continue reading