After a troubled build-up and a fair share of controversies, it was a relief to see sport finally take centre stage at the Olympic Games in Rio this week.
But despite the undoubted excellence of the majority of those competing and the celebration of a wonderful host country, the admission that many of the environmental targets set for the Games had been missed was a reminder of the challenges facing some of our most iconic destinations.
Once regarded by many as a box to tick, sustainability is now a key consideration for all travel companies that realise they can no longer just pay lip-service to the concept. And that is why we have produced this third annual Responsible Travel-themed issue of Travel Weekly to delve deeper into the issues facing the industry.
Reflecting its leadership in the field, our headline sponsor Tui Group has outlined its current priorities and activity. And you can also read about the research and work being carried out by companies and organisations, including Abta, G Adventures and Carnival Corporation’s Fathom, to identify the most responsible ways of doing business at home and overseas.
Whether it’s the water quality in Rio’s Guanabara Bay, or the wellbeing of the millions of people around the world who work in the travel and tourism industries, there remain many challenges to face.
But the fact that an increasing number of brands are taking a proactive approach to those challenges is encouraging.
Just like the winners of the gold medals in Rio, we need sustainable champions to encourage and inspire.
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