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GoMedia – Toronto 2010

August 25, 2010

I’m at GoMedia in Toronto this week, an international travel & tourism event, that is making me feel very excited and hopeful about the possibilities of Green travel in Canada.

Representatives from each province in Canada are here to talk to the world’s media about their product – which they’ve decided to do in a speed-dating meeting style. It’s a pretty good idea – you get a good taste to see if you’re a fit and if not, well, you can always find something to chat about in ten minutes!

I’m feeling hopeful about the discovery that so many companies have Green Teams in place — that so many hotels are focussing on making sure that a key goal for their business is sustainability. New developments are happening with green thinking in mind, and for once, it really doesn’t seem to be just ‘greenwash’.

One of the many places I wish I had the time to visit on this trip is Kelowna. I met Catherine from Tourism Kelowna who told me that they are the Solar City of the BC province – they have around 2000 hours of sunshine a year and little rain. Many of their streetlights are solar-lit, and they have more bike paths per capita than anywhere in Canada, (which after the thrills, spills and downright alarming experience that is cycling in nearly-no-bike-lanes-at-all Toronto is good to hear). Oh – and even a bio-dynamic winery!

I may be being needlessly optimistic for once but I can’t help feeling finally tourism is waking up to the idea that it’s not enough just to be ‘seen to be green’ — you have to make those green goals a part of everything you do – from food & beverages through to building materials, laundry services, bike racks and beyond…

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