Sustainable tourism is tourism that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities. Source: United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). Sustainable tourism development Sustainable tourism development guidelines and management practices are applicable to all forms of tourism in all types of destinations, including mass tourism and the various niche tourism segments. Sustainability principles refer to the environmental, economic, and socio-cultural aspects of tourism development, and a suitable balance must be established between these three dimensions to guarantee its long-term sustainability. Thus, sustainable tourism should (Source: UNWTO Sustainable Tourism Development) Make optimal use of environmental resources that constitute a key element in tourism development, maintaining essential ecological processes and helping to conserve natural heritage and biodiversity. Respect the socio-cultural authenticity of host communities, conserve their built and living cultural heritage and traditional values, and contribute to inter-cultural understanding and tolerance. Ensure viable, long-term economic operations, providing socio-economic benefits to all stakeholders that are fairly distributed, including stable employment and income-earning opportunities and social services to host communities, and contributing to poverty alleviation. Tourism and Sustainable Development Goals Source: Download the brochure Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere As one of the largest and fastest growing economic sectors in the world, tourism is well-positioned to foster economic growth and development at all levels and provide income through job creation. Sustainable tourism development, and its impact at community level, can be linked with national poverty reduction goals, those related to promoting entrepreneurship and small businesses, and empowering less favored groups, particularly youth and women. Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture Tourism can spur agricultural productivity by promoting the production, use and sale of local produce in tourist destinations and its full integration in the tourism value chain. In addition, agro-tourism, a growing tourism segment, can complement traditional agricultural activities. The resulting rise of income in local communities can lead to a more resilient agriculture while enhancing the value of the tourism experience. Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all A well-trained and skillful workforce is crucial for tourism to prosper. The sector can provide incentives to invest in education and vocational training and assist labor mobility through cross-border agreements n qualifications, standards and certifications. I. particular youth, women, senior citizens, indigenous peoples and those with special needs should benefit through education means, where tourism has the potential to promote inclusiveness, the values of a culture of tolerance, peace and non-violence, and all aspects of global exchange and citizenship. Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls Tourism can empower women in multiple ways, particularly through the provision of jobs and through income-generating opportunities in small and larger-scale tourism and hospitality related enterprises. As one of the sectors with the highest share of women employed and entrepreneurs, tourism can be a tool for women to unlock their potential, helping them to become fully engaged and lead in every aspect of society Goal 6: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all Tourism can play a critical role in achieving water access and security, as well as hygiene and sanitation for all. Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all As a sector that requires substantial energy input, tourism can accelerate the shift toward renewable energy and increase its share in the global energy mix. Goal 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all Goal 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries Tourism can be a powerful tool for community development and reducing inequalities if it engages local populations and all key stakeholders in its development. Tourism is also an effective means for developing countries to take part in the global economy. Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts Tourism contributes to and is affected by climate change. It is, therefore, in the sector’s own interest to play a leading role in the global response to climate change. By lowering energy consumption and shifting to renewable energy sources, especially in the transport and accommodation sector, tourism can help tackle one of the most pressing challenges of our time. Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development Gaol 15: Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss. Majestic landscapes, pristine forests, rich biodiversity, and natural heritage sites are often main reasons why tourists visit a destination. Sustainable tourism can play a major role, not only in conserving and preserving biodiversity, but also in respecting terrestrial ecosystems, owing to its efforts towards the reduction of waste and consumption, the conservation of native flora and fauna, and its awareness-raising activities. Goal 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels As tourism revolves around billions of encounters between people of diverse cultural backgrounds, the sector can foster multicultural and inter-faith tolerance and understanding, laying the foundation for more peaceful societies. Goal 17: Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development Due to its cross-sectorial nature tourism has the ability to strengthen private/public partnerships and engage multiple stakeholders – international, national, regional and local – to work together to achieve the SDGs and other common goals.