Voluntourism sustainable tourism to surge in Obama 2

Barak Obama raising a glass at inauguration – Reuters Ben Myers

Both voluntourism and general sustainable tourism options are set to show significant growth in the second term of Barak Obama’s presidency.

President Barack Obama won praise abroad on Tuesday for his pledge to lead the fight against climate change, which has faltered as nations argue over who should foot the bill to lower carbon emissions.He devoted a surprisingly long section of Monday’s inauguration speech to climate change – more than a minute out of about 20. He said failure to respond to the threat “would betray our children and future generations.”

“The path towards sustainable energy sources will be long and sometimes difficult. But America cannot resist this transition; we must lead it,” he said.

“Great strong words on climate… The U.S. President could not commit stronger to delivering now,” Connie Hedegaard, the European Union’s climate commissioner, wrote on Twitter.

“We have got work to do on climate change and President Obama was very forthright about the need to tackle climate change,” Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard told reporters.

“It really changes the nature, style and substance of the U.S. engagement with the international climate negotiations,” said Bill Hare, a scientist who heads Berlin-based Climate Analytics.

Unlike all of Washington’s major allies in developed nations, the U.S. Congress has not legislated caps on domestic greenhouse gas emissions – yet.

Moreover, two decades of summits and resolutions have not stopped the world pumping growing quantities of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, despite a wealth of evidence that it is causing more frequent and devastating droughts, storms and floods.

And thus far, the US has hardly been helpful in the global struggle to avoid dangerous warming. Maybe this is a time for a sea-change and for the US to re-engage with the Earth Summit and its goals of sustainable development – which considers the environment as one of the four pillars of sustainability (the others social, cultural and economic)

Certainly there will be movement at the social level too – the word for Obama being ‘Legacy’.

Writes David Clemmens in the Voluntourist Newsletter:

“The U.S. has long seen itself as an exporter of goodwill, social investment, and general beneficence to the world at large. Post-World War II activity has served as a benchmark; yet, we may be entering a renaissance of international giving, and voluntourism, among other things, speaks to this.”

“President Obama could set the U.S. on a course of opening its communities and its natural environments to the influx of international goodwill. And such an effort could lead to a newly reformed perception of what the United States is, and what its people represent.”

“2016 marks the beginning of what could be a unique approach, through voluntourism, for U.S. Foreign Policy. How often have countries considered the importance of sharing their respective national treasures with international arrivals, via volunteering, to strengthen their respective perceptions in the hearts and minds of millions, if not billions?”

So, climate change & voluntourism may well be key tourism related activities in Obama 2, will these social and environmental attitudes translate into better forms of tourism that has cultural and economic benefits too?

Source / Fuente: travelmole.com

Author / Autor: travelmole.com

 Date / Fecha: 03/02/13

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