Assuming Climate responsibility Accompaniment for destinations with a net zero target

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KlimDest – The Project

The Swiss government has decided on net zero for 2050. However, there have been no concepts for tourism in the long-term climate strategy so far – also because there was no concrete data. This is where the project “Climate Neutral Destinations” comes in. The Innotour-funded project aims to calculate, model and reduce the climate tourism footprint of destinations. On the one hand, the highest certification standards are met, and on the other hand, a contribution is made to the climate goals of the Paris Agreement and the implementation of the “Green Deal” Graub√ľnden.

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The three destinations

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With Arosa 2030, the holistic destination strategy, the chosen path of sustainable development is being consistently pursued. Sustainability means that economic, ecological and social factors must be in harmony. One of the first steps is the CO2 balance. It serves to determine the current situation. In this way, the greatest levers can be evaluated, which serve as the basis for the reduction path of the destination.


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In Valposchiavo, local products “100% Valposchiavo” from locally closed value chains from production to food refinement and to enjoyment are at the centre of the valley’s tourist offer. In the future, Valposchiavo, as a valley where electricity production from hydropower has played an important role for over 100 years, would also like to develop further in the area of CO2 neutrality.

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In the holiday destination of Davos, companies and guests protect the climate together. They are helping to achieve an ambitious goal: Davos wants to become the first holiday resort in Switzerland with net zero emissions by 2030. The focus is on promoting measures that reduce CO‚āā emissions locally. For this purpose, guests, customers, companies and the municipality jointly feed the “myclimate climate fund Davos.

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¬Ľ For the Davos Destinations Organisation, an assessment of the carbon footprint of the tourist destination is an important cornerstone for addressing the climate goals of the coming years on a science-based basis.¬Ľ
~ Luca Ravasio, Destination Davos Klosters

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System Delimitation

The climate responsibility of tourism extends beyond the boundaries of the destination. Ultimately, the motivation to go on holiday is the driver for people to travel. Therefore, our comprehensive calculation of the honest climate footprint considers the entire journey – from departure at home to return and also includes all products consumed on holiday and their transport. In the destination, all tourism service providers, from the accommodation to the mountain railway to the indoor swimming pool, are included in the calculation.

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Quickguide – 5 steps to comprehensive
climate protection

Step 1: Organisation

Strategic developments take time and manpower, it is no different with a footprint calculation. Do not underestimate the effort!

You can find more information about step 1 in the manual

Step 2: Survey

A web-based platform for standardised carbon accounting and management of comprehensive sustainability data is used for this purpose. This has been adapted, expanded and tested by myclimate together with the University of Applied Sciences Graub√ľnden to meet the needs for destination calculation and the necessary modelling. You need a licence and preferably an introductory workshop.

You can find more information about step 2 in the manual.

Step 3: Evaluation

The following evaluation of the data serves to identify the relevant areas (hotspots) and forms the basis for the successful planning of measures. Repetitions of the evaluation form the starting point for future success monitoring.

You can find more information about step 3 in the manual.

Step 4: Strategy

The findings of the climate footprint and the analysis of internal and external climate-relevant influencing factors are used as the basis for a climate strategy in order to evaluate the opportunities and risks for the tourism destination but also for the individual service providers – and to develop measures for climate protection.

You can find more information about step 4 in the manual.

Step 5: Climate Fund

The Climate Fund is the comprehensive financing mechanism for the implementation of the climate strategy of an entire destination.

You can find more information about step 5 in the manual.
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¬Ľ To achieve our goals, we need to know where we come from. Knowing the carbon footprint of the destination is the basis for initiating change. The biggest challenge here is to know and collect the data. Thanks to KlimDest, we have an instrument that enables us to close this knowledge gap and to conduct regular monitoring in the future. ¬ę
~ Claudio Föhn, Destination Arosa

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Climate communication – winning the guest as a partner

An important project result concerns climate and sustainability communication to the guests. They do not want to be lectured or patronised, but they are interested in climate commitment in their holiday region. Through proper communication, guests can be won over as allies in the efforts against climate change. Many studies also show that sustainability-conscious travellers are willing to spend more money on climate-friendly products. Our guide highlights some of the communication principles that have been researched for this purpose.

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¬Ľ In recent years, we have relied heavily on local products with the 100% Valposchiavo project. KlimDest can help us to determine whether and to what extent these efforts are contributing to CO2 reduction. The aim is to back this up with concrete figures. ¬ę
~ Kaspar Howald, Destination Valposchiavo

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Funded by



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photo credits: © across: © Valposchiavo Turismo across: © Davos Klosters / Martin Heckmeier across: © Arosa Tourismus / Nina Hardegger-Mattli across: © Valposchiavo Turismo