UNWTO Project Delivers Climate Adaptation, Mangrove Protection in Indonesia

Unwto6 May 2014: Participants at the Sustainable Tourism through Energy Efficiency with Adaptation and Mitigation Measures (STREAM) project conference recognized its contributions to climate change adaptation, energy efficiency and coral reef and mangrove protection in Pangandaran, West Java, Indonesia. 

The project, a collaboration between the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Industries, represents an example of how the tourism sector is engaging communities to fight climate change and restore coral reefs and mangrove forests.

Climate change is already affecting the tourism sector, according to Márcio Favilla, UNWTO. Favilla said STREAM's results are “an exceptional example of how tourism can be an effective tool in the fight against climate change, protecting natural resources while leading to inclusive development of local communities and fruitful cross-sector cooperation.”

STEAM has implemented energy efficiency and renewable energy measures throughout Pangandaran's hotels and restaurants. STREAM also launched a rehabilitation programme to protect and restore coral reefs and mangrove forests in collaboration with the Pangandaran community. Over 2000 community members participated in mangrove conservation, including by planting 38,000 mangroves. In addition, 450 children participated in a ‘Mangrove Ambassadors Programme.'

To engage Pangandaran tourists, STREAM has promoted green tourism activities, including the use of bamboo bicycles and solar-powered boats, as well as opportunities to participate in planting mangroves. It has also worked to change tourists' behavior by encouraging climate-friendly actions, such as giving tourists a voucher for mangrove planting activities in exchange for reusing towels.

The STEAM Delivery Conference took place from 5-7 May 2014, in Pangandaran, Indonesia. The German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety has supported STREAM, which is part of the International Climate Initiative, since 2011. The project intends to publish best practices and guidelines on knowledge exchange and transfer in 2014. [UNWTO Press Release] [STREAM Website]