ECOCLUB.com Team Blog
blogging about ecological & socially just tourism & living
Can Sustainability Fly?
While the E.U. is pressing airlines to cut carbon emissions, and the US and China traditionally trying to block any global climate action measure, an online debate on the burning (literally) and usually swept-under-the-carpet issue of "whether 'sustainable' tourism can include flying" is being held at the University of Central Lancashire, UK on 30th March. Valere Tjolle and Dr Davina Stanford will defend the sustainability of flying while Professor Les Lumsdon and Paul Peeters will oppose it. Details can be found at http://www.uclan.ac.uk/schools/ssto/research/itt/debate_can_sustainable_tourism_include_flying.php and http://www.facebook.com/FlyingDebateUCLan
For anyone who approaches and understands ecological tourism through political ecology and not just as elitist nature travel, it is clear that flying is problematic to say the least. We prefer bikes, trains, hiking, public transport, social tourism, accessible for all. Jetting off to a luxury award-winning pseudo-eco resort at the other end of the planet has little to do with ecological principles. But "sustainability" is a different ball game, it is an apolitical term, excellent for use in consultants reports, just like corporate social responsibility. Perhaps a debate on the "corporate social responsibility' of airlines should follow :)
Now, for a truly eco way of flying, Icarus-style, watch the video below, although it's a hoax: