CCCTA pursues sustainable biosphere destination certification

Spirit bear. (Destination BC/Yuri Choufour photo)Spirit bear. (Destination BC/Yuri Choufour photo)
Fraser River near Rudy Johnson Bridge. (John Wellburn photo)Fraser River near Rudy Johnson Bridge. (John Wellburn photo)
Great Bear Rainforest. (Jesaja Class photo)Great Bear Rainforest. (Jesaja Class photo)
Indigenous interpreter Mike Restaket at Barkerville Historic Town Park. (Tyler Cave photo)Indigenous interpreter Mike Restaket at Barkerville Historic Town Park. (Tyler Cave photo)
Junction, Sheep Range Provincial Park. (Destination BC/Grant Harder photo)Junction, Sheep Range Provincial Park. (Destination BC/Grant Harder photo)
Kayanara Guest Ranch near Canim Lake. (Destination BC/Black Jorgenson photo)Kayanara Guest Ranch near Canim Lake. (Destination BC/Black Jorgenson photo)
South Chilcotin Mountains. (Eco Escape Travel photo)South Chilcotin Mountains. (Eco Escape Travel photo)
Xwisten Experience Tours at Lillooet. (Eco Escape Travel photo)Xwisten Experience Tours at Lillooet. (Eco Escape Travel photo)
Mitchell River at Quesnel Lake. (Geoff Moore photo)Mitchell River at Quesnel Lake. (Geoff Moore photo)
Amy Thacker, CEO of the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (left) and Kristi Denby, CCCTA Biosphere Project Manager, sign the Biosphere Letter of Commitment. (Geoff Moore photo)Amy Thacker, CEO of the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (left) and Kristi Denby, CCCTA Biosphere Project Manager, sign the Biosphere Letter of Commitment. (Geoff Moore photo)
Amy Thacker, CEO of the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (left) and Kristi Denby, CCCTA Biosphere Project Manager, sign the Biosphere Letter of Commitment. (Geoff Moore photo)Amy Thacker, CEO of the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (left) and Kristi Denby, CCCTA Biosphere Project Manager, sign the Biosphere Letter of Commitment. (Geoff Moore photo)

To commemorate World Earth Day, the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (CCCTA) formally committed to fostering a more sustainable visitor economy as it works to rebuild the post-COVID-19 tourism economy.

Tourism stakeholders from throughout B.C., and even abroad, gathered virtually April 22 to mark the signing of the Biosphere Letter of Commitment.

Amy Thacker, CEO of the CCCTA, said the signing solidifies a long-term commitment to achieving the internationally recognised Responsible Tourism Institute’s Biosphere Certification.

“We’re very excited to be working on this,” Thacker told the Tribune. “They [Responsible Tourism Institute] will identify areas of excellence and gaps, which allows us to work with different partners in the region to set common objectives and goals, and to find resources to invest in projects and initiatives.”

In embarking on this journey, she said the CCCTA looks forward to building collaborative new partnerships, setting new strategic goals and objectives to support stewarding and regenerating the region’s tourism assets, supporting responsible growth of the sector to ensure a sustainable equilibrium between the socio-cultural, economic and natural environment.

At the heart of this is inclusion and ensuring residents, local businesses, Indigenous Nations, communities and the region thrive today and into the foreseeable future.

“Today demonstrates a commitment of the long-term values upheld by the CCCTA,” Thacker said. “Both the board and team have long led with sustainability at the core of decisions, programs and practices so it is fitting to sign this public declaration recognizing the efforts of so many, including our regional partners.”

The CCCTA is joining three other regional destination management organizations (Tourism Vancouver Island, Kootenay Rockies Tourism Association and Northern BC Tourism Association) who, together with the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (TOTA), operate under the umbrella of the BC Regional Tourism Secretariat, officially declaring their commitment to pursue the Biosphere Certification, granted by the Responsible Tourism Institute.

READ MORE: Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism ends 2020 focused on future

If successful, the CCCTA will join TOTA, which is among only 34 destination management organizations in the world, and the only one in Canada, to achieve this status.

Thacker said the certification is based on established standards and targets aligned with the United Nations 17 sustainable development goals in areas that include climate change, environment, social, economy and culture — and guarantees compliance and continuous improvement through a private, voluntary and independent certification system — which is evaluated on an annual basis.

“Signing this declaration acknowledges progress towards Biosphere Sustainable Certification,” shared Andre Kuerbis, Chair of the CCCTA.

“On behalf of the board of directors, we commit to supporting responsible growth of the tourism sector in our region while being inclusive of all residents, embracing our heritage, including Indigenous peoples and cultures. This will guarantee the role of tourism to promote both sustainable tourism practices and development, while enhancing the visitor experience and creating awareness among visitors on sustainability issues as we look towards recovery.”

During Thursday’s signing, cultural ambassador Frank Antoine, the co-founder of Moccasin Trails in Kamloops, reminded those in virtual attendance of the urgency of abiding by the agreement in working together for the sustainable future of the tourism industry.

“COVID-19 actually made us all stop and listen, and that’s our Creator, our higher power, telling us to slow down and think about our decisions,” Antoine said. “It’s giving us the opportunity to grow again together, and that really means a lot to me.”


 


greg.sabatino@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Quesnel Junior School flagged as latest COVID-19 exposure in School District 28

The Quesnel School District has detected eight exposures in the 2020/2021 school year

BCHydro Power Pioneers provincial director Rae Daggitt gets creative to deliver Matthew Hender his cheque. He presented Hender the award for community service alongside Roger North, the president of the North Cariboo Branch. (Cassidy Dankochik Photo - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
Quesnel student gets boost from local power pioneers

Matthew Hender received a $500 scholarship from the BCHydro Power Pioneers

A Cariboo Regional District director and School District 27 trustee, Angie Delainey is also a fourth generation business owner in downtown Williams Lake. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Angie Delainey appointed Cariboo Regional District representative on regional board

Delainey and Steve Forseth represent the CRD at the North Central Local Government Association

From October 2020 to April 2021 more than 540 centimeters of snow fell at Barkerville. (Lindsay Chung - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
Not so average April snowfall in Barkerville

59 centimeters of white stuff fell last month

A prowling coyote proved no match for a stray black cat who chased it out of a Port Moody parking lot Friday, May 14. (Twitter/Screen grab)
VIDEO: Little but fierce: Cat spotted chasing off coyote by Port Moody police

The black cat is seen jumping out from under a parked car and running the wild animal out of a vacant lot

A forest of dance-protesters outside the BC Legislature on April 11. These participants were doing the Dance for the Ancient Forest in support of the Fairy Creek blockade and against old-growth logging. (Zoë Ducklow/News Staff)
Arrests begin at Fairy Creek blockade on Vancouver Island

Five protesters arrested as RCMP begin to enforce injunction

A thunderstorm pictured in Fraser Valley in 2021. (Black Press Media/Jaimie Grafstrom)
Wildfire concerns sparked after 320+ lightning strikes blasted B.C. yesterday

Approximately one-quarter of the province is currently listed as being at moderate risk of fire

A restaurant server on White Rock’s Marine Drive serves customers on a roadside patio. Indoor dining and recreational travel bans have been in effect since late March in B.C. (Peace Arch News)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate falls to 411 cases Tuesday

360 people in hospital, up slightly, two more deaths

The Banff National Park entrance is shown in Banff, Alta., Tuesday, March 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Minister asks Canadians to camp carefully in national parks as season starts

Kitchen shelters in Banff National Park closed, trails on Vancouver Island will only be one-way

Names of those aboard the ship are seen at Komagata Maru monument in downtown Vancouver, on Tuesday, May 18, 2021. The City of Vancouver has issued an apology for its racist role in denying entry to 376 passengers aboard a ship that was forced to return to India over a century ago. Mayor Kennedy Stewart says discrimination by the city had “cruel effects” on the Sikhs, Hindus and Muslims aboard the Komagata Maru, which arrived in Burrard Inlet on May 23, 1914. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver mayor says sorry for city’s role in turning away South Asians in 1914

Kennedy Stewart has declared May 23 as the annual Komagata Maru Day of Remembrance

A crew of WestCoast WILD Adventures employees tackled an onslaught of litter left at the ‘Locks of Love’ fence at Wally Creek on May 2. (Anne-Marie Gosselin photo)
Litter woes consume popular ‘Locks of Love’ fence on B.C.’s Pacific Rim

Popular view spot near Tofino plagued by people hanging masks and other unwanted garbage

Vincent Doumeizel, senior advisor at the United Nations Global Compact on Oceans, as well as director for the Food Programme for the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, pulls up some sugar kelp seaweed off the French coast in April 2020. He was the keynote speaker during the opening ceremony of the inaugural Seaweed Days Festival. (Vincent Doumeizel/Submitted)
Let’s hear it for seaweed: slimy, unsexy and the world’s greatest untapped food source

Experts talks emerging industry’s challenges and potential at Sidney inaugural Seawood Days Festival

Troy Patterson, a Cadboro Bay 15-year-old, got a virtual meeting with B.C.’s environment minister months after he started an online petition calling for construction of the Coastal GasLink pipeline to stop. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
B.C. teen’s 23,000-name Coastal GasLink petition gets him an audience with the minister

15-year-old Saanich high school student and George Heyman discussed project for about 30 minutes

Most Read