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Sustainable Arctic Tourism Association


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Conservation and the use of natural resources in a sustainable way are essential to the long-term health of the environment. Untouched areas in the Arctic are non-renewable resources, once affected by any kind of development it is impossible to return them to their original state. Therefore it is important for tourism operations in the Arctic to be carried out in a sustainable manner, with special consideration given to the environment. Environmental assessment must always be undertaken prior to any development of tourism projects and the tourism activity should always comply with all international conventions relating to the environment as well as all national, state and local laws. This principle stands for establishing and continuously improvements to all environmental policies. Transportation, waste, lodging routines and cultural as well as environmental impacts are carried out with consideration to the specific demands of the Arctic and further adjusted to local conditions. The use of available best practices are continuously monitored, evaluated and improved.

  • Written environmental plan.
    All operators have a written environmental plan for their company and activities. This plan should consist of planned environmental improvements and their connected schedules as well as land-use planning. The environmental plan should be visible to guests.
  • Minimize waste and energy use.
    Applies environmentally responsible practices concerning waste management, recycling and energy consumption through all phases of the operation. Be sure waste disposal has minimal environmental and aesthetic impact and be efficient in the use of natural resources like water and energy.
  • Minimize transports.
    Companies work with effective transport planning. Activity based transport systems are connected with logistic planning, minimised use of fossil fuels and use of best practical technology that is available. Transportation systems with minimised impact on environment are given preference.
  • Respect the limitations of the destination.
    Minimize the negative impact on visited natural sites and local cultures. It is always the destination that sets the limit for tourism activities. Land use planning and environmental impacts should form the basis for planning tourism activities.
  • Monitor your impacts.
    Monitoring is an important resource tool and needs to be included as part of all operator's activities within the sustainable tourism setting, especially in sensitive areas like the Arctic. Two aspects of monitoring tourism in sensitive areas are visitor impacts and service quality. Ensure that measurements of tourism activities, volumes and impacts are accurate, as complete as possible and the data is effectively communicated. Monitoring will give respectability to your environmental and conservation efforts as well as acting as a marketing advantage.
  • Evaluate all tourism activities to ensure that business and environmental goals are met.
    Monitoring, evaluation and management of impacts in the surrounding areas should be accomplished on at least yearly basis.
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SAT - Sustainable Arctic Tourism


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