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Southeast Tourism Society Spring Conference 2010


Tourism is an Economic Engine $14.4 Billion Industry in TN Economic Benefits Townies ... educated and higher-end travelers are the most sustainability ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Southeast Tourism Society Spring Conference 2010

Southeast Tourism SocietySpring Conference 2010
  • Commissioner Susan Whitaker
  • Tennessee Department of
  • Tourist Development

March 23, 2010
What is Sustainable Tourism?
  • Sustaining theenvironment,culture and heritage
    of a region while at the same time sustaining
    the economic growththrough tourism.

Cades Cove - Great Smoky Mountains
Why Should We care?
  • Economic Benefits
  • Townies
  • Tourists
  • Business
  • Recruitment
  • Its all inter-related!

Tourism is an Economic Engine 14.4 Billion
Industry in TN
Economic Boost to Your Local Community
  • Affluent, educated and higher-end travelers are
    the most sustainability-oriented.
  • Source U.S. Travel Association and
    YPartnerships TravelHorizons

What Should We Do As Tourism Leaders?
  • Define Objective
  • Tourism businesses become sustainable, one
    step at a time.
  • Create Industry Awareness
  • Generate buy-in with all stakeholders
  • Inclusivity - demonizing NOT allowed

What Should We Do As Tourism Leaders?
  • Educational Component
  • Town Hall Forums
  • Sustainable Tourism Workshops
  • GeoGreen Webinars
  • Provide Resources
  • Expertise
  • Best Practices / Case Studies
  • Sustainable Tourism Toolbox
  • Funding Opportunities

Develop Critical Partnerships
  • Key to Credibility Sponsorship
  • Governor and Cabinet
  • National sustainability leaders - National
  • State Congressional leadership
  • State and local sustainability leaders
  • Local political leaders
  • Local industry leaders

Tennessees Approach
  • Great Smoky Mountains Sustainable Tourism
    Summit April 2008 Knoxville, TN
  • Go for the Gold!
  • Get the Talk Right!

Dirk Kempthorne, Secretary of the InteriorU.S.
Senator Lamar Alexander
  • Create an initiative with sizzle and substance
  • Define target markets critical to success
  • Give credit where credit is due!

University of TN Students GSM Summit - April 2008
FundingWho Paid For This?
  • Attendees
  • Sponsorships
  • Resource Fair (Pay to Play)

Sustainable Resource FairGSM Summit - April 2008
Tennessees Sustainable Tourism Initiative
  • Program Accomplishments
  • Created an open forum
  • Generated growing awareness
  • Grassroots level results
  • Award winning program
  • National model for sustainable tourism planning

Program Accomplishments
  • Tennessee Sustainable Tourism Initiative
    recognized by U.S. Travel Association as a best
    practice for sustainable tourism planning

Program Accomplishments
  • STS Shining Example Award for Tourism for
  • and
    rank in the top 10 Google search results for
    keywords sustainabletourism and sustainable

The Ripple Effect
  • ARC Gems of Appalachia grants announced and
    awarded in 2008, 2009 and 2010. - grants to
    promote sustainable tourism in the gateway
    communities of TN and NC
  • RubyFalls receives TNCET grant for installation
    of solar panels. - Tennessee Department of
    Economic and Community Developments
    Office of Energy Policy grant.

The Ripple Effect
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park - Do Your
    Part visitor campaign
  • 1st Green Certification program launched in
  • Unicoi County implements sustainable tourism
    development plan and community training workshops
  • Gateway Green Blount, Sevier, Cocke

Program Accomplishments
  • Sustainable Tourism Summit
  • Industry Web site launched (16,125 page
  • Eco-friendly toolbox print and online 1,000

Program Accomplishments
  • Green travel planning website launched for
  • 7,027 page views since launch in May 2009

Program Accomplishments
  • Sustaining our Heritage
  • Tennessee Civil War Trails Program
  • Launched Civil War website
  • 10,677 page views since
    launch on February 2010.
    Ranks in top 20 pages viewed.

Program Accomplishments
  • 5 statewide sustainable tourism educational
  • 6 GeoGreen Webinarsin 2009
  • 5 webinars planned for Spring / Summer 2010

Upper Cumberland Workshop Baxter, TN - June 2009
Industry Sustainable Tourism Accomplishments
  • 1st new LEED certified hotel opens - Gatlinburg
  • Ruby Falls 1st attraction in U.S. to be Green
    Globe certified
  • Ripley From Red to Green - sustainable tourism
    revitalization plan
  • Chattanoogas Green Lodging Certification Program
    - 1st U.S. based program fully recognized by
    Green Globe

Industry Sustainable Tourism Accomplishments
  • Cooper Hotels plans solar for two existing TN
    hotels while challenging other properties to lead
    by example through solar
  • Gatlinburg Green receives 75 participation from
    local businesses in green certification program
  • Deaderick Street named TNs 1st green street 5
    million investment

Industry Sustainable Tourism Accomplishments
  • Greener Welcome at TN Welcome Centers new
    Lookout Valley I-24 Welcome Center utilizes
  • Tennessee State Parks offers eco-friendly LEED
    certified cabins Montgomery Bell State Park
  • Festivals Go Green!- Bonnaroo, Manchester-
    Secret City Festival, Oak Ridge- River and
    Spires Festival, Clarksville

Industry Sustainable Tourism Accomplishments
  • Solar America Cities Project - Knoxville selected
    to join project
  • Tennessees 1st solar powered convention center
    Knoxville Convention Center in planning phase to
    implement solar
  • Largest green roof in Chattanooga planned at the
    Creative Discovery Museum

Whats Next for 2010?
  • Continue partnership with TDEC
  • Geo-Green Webinars
  • EPA Funding Source Reduction Grant to develop
    Statewide Green Certification Program for
    Tennessees Tour and Travel Industry

Sustainable Tourism Makes Both Dollars Sense
At the end of the day, most green business
activity isor should beabout making companies,
and economies, more resilient and competitive.
That seems to me to be a recipe for success
during good times and bad. Green can make sense
when times are toughand even because times are
tough. Joel Makower, Author Strategies
for the Green Economy Source Thinking Green
in a Blue Economy (October, 2008)
  • Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
  • Susan Whitaker, Commissioner
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