Tourisme Montréal goes green



    MONTREAL, March 31 /CNW Telbec/ - Environmental management challenges are
vital issues for all organizations in today's world. The very nature of travel
makes the tourism industry one of the sectors most closely touched by these
problems. Moreover, several tourism stakeholders in Montréal and elsewhere
have already taken commitments to limit the environmental impact of their
actions. In this regard, the concerted vigilance of the convention industry
comes to mind.
    In response to this major and unprecedented challenge, Tourisme Montréal
together with the tourism industry very recently embarked on an impressive
plan to go green. This comprehensive approach has two phases:

    1) With the participation of our organization's employees, the board of
directors ratified the implementation of a Guide to the Green Office that will
facilitate a change of habits and a commitment to embrace the change. This
guide not only includes important measures for recycling and reducing
consumption in terms of office supplies and energy, but also enables concrete
initiatives:

    
    - Tourisme Montréal pledges a financial contribution to Montréal
      awareness-raising and re-greening organizations to help compensate
      the impact of employee travel on the environment

    - The organization will also include an eco-responsibility provision in
      the contracts of its suppliers

    - Tourisme Montréal will ensure that Montréal events requiring funding
      from its Event Assistance Program have taken steps to be ecologically
      friendly
    

    These measures have been in effect since February 2008.

    2) Aware of the need to deal with the considerable issues faced by the
tourism industry, Tourisme Montréal will oversee the creation of a Montréal
Tourism Industry Green Committee that will put in place an action plan to help
reduce the impact on the environment despite the anticipated growth of the
industry.
    In particular, this Committee will ensure the implementation of a policy
that will introduce environmental management practices and call on the
individual and collective accountability of companies. Using a series of
indicators, it will be possible to measure the impact of the Montréal tourism
industry activities on the environment and make changes to the policy
guidelines as needed.
    Chaired by Tourisme Montréal, the committee is made up of representatives
from the organization's promotional members: Association des hôtels du grand
Montréal, Aéroports de Montréal, Palais des congrès, ToHu, Transat Chair in
Tourism of UQAM, JPDL, Montréal's Nature Museums, and Vélo-Québec. Other
members from different tourism sectors will soon join the existing Committee.
    The success of such a project depends unquestionably on the adoption of
common goals by a great number of tourism and cultural companies. Meanwhile,
the recent recognition of Montréal by the National Geographic Society for
being the first city in the world to sign the Geotourism Charter, as well as
the accreditation of quality just obtained from Destination Marketing
Association International, amply demonstrate the commitment of the entire
Montréal tourism industry to unite and make Montréal an environmentally
responsible city and pioneer in sustainable tourism.

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    Tourisme Montréal is responsible for providing leadership in the
    concerted efforts of hospitality and promotion in order to position the
    destination on leisure and business travel markets. It is also
    responsible for developing Montréal's tourism product in accordance with
    the ever-changing conditions of the market.
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For further information:

For further information: Pierre Bellerose, Vice President, Public
Relations, Product Research and Development, Tourisme Montréal, (514)
844-2404, bellerose.pierre@tourisme-montreal.org


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