Image: EarthCheck

The world’s leading scientific benchmarking, certification and advisory group for sustainable travel and tourism, EarthCheck, has commissioned Griffith Institute for Tourism to prepare an update to increase the accuracy of their Greenhouse Gas Emissions Database and Accounting Tool.

Building on the strategic partnership that was signed between Griffith Institute for Tourism and EarthCheck in 2016, and the Global Sustainable Tourism Dashboard created by Griffith University and the University of Surrey – EarthCheck’s GHG database measures the carbon emission factors of their global customers to benchmark their operational performance with their carbon footprints.

Griffith_Dr_Rawan_Nimri_and_Professor_Susanne_Becken

Dr Rawan Nimri and Prof. Susanne Becken

The project is being co-led by Dr Rawan Nimri and Professor Susanne Becken from Griffith Institute for Tourism in Griffith Business School. Dr Nimri is an associate lecturer in the Department of Tourism, Sport and Hotel Management and an emerging researcher in the area of best practices for green hotels and low-carbon travel. Professor Becken is an international advisor on Tourism GHGs who has presented on climate change adaptations for over a decade to the Australian, New Zealand and Thailand governments.

EarthCheck helps its members to measure, track and monitor over 2 million tonnes of CO2e annually and they operate in more than 70 countries, in six languages and across 32 sectors, affecting more than 6 million consumers every day. They specialise in advisory and certification services for the travel and tourism industry and their GHG database and accounting tool is utilised by businesses who are willing to audit and manage their carbon emissions in order to have a competitive advantage for changing consumer preferences towards low-carbon services and for when carbon regulations begin.

“The EarthCheck GHG Database and Accounting Tool is the leading global tourism-specific database of this kind and it covers a wide range of emission sources from stationary and mobile combustion to electricity and fugitive emissions for customers looking to accurately measure their carbon footprint,“ said Dr Nimri.

“This important research will ensure that EarthCheck’s GHG database remains the leading tool for evaluating carbon emissions globally and as accurate as possible while compliant with current international GHG accounting standards.”

“Some of the components that are being updated as part of the review process include the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories published in 2019 employing new methodologies with sound scientific basis and the database will include the International Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standards and the Global Warming Potential (GWP).”

Dr Nimri explained that tourism is a huge contributor to carbon emissions, accounting for 8% of emissions worldwide and climbing as tourism grows faster than the economies it contributes to. And within these emissions, the hotel and accommodation sector generates approximately 21 per cent of the emissions.

EarthCheck’s environmentally friendly products and services have been built on the Agenda 21 principles for Sustainable Development endorsed by 182 Heads of State at the United Nations Rio De Janeiro Earth Summit in 1992 and GIFT researchers are pleased to be able to contribute to upholding these principles of sustainability.

“The updated GHG database and accounting tool, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2019, will provide a timely, practical resource to help tourism destinations both gain an understanding of their ability and readiness to address climate change measures and the actions that can be undertaken to help their industry respond to climate risks and opportunities,” said Dr Nimri.

“For over 30 years, EarthCheck has worked with leading research centres and universities around the world to address the key sustainability and climate change issues facing tourism destinations, communities and enterprises. And for many years they have offered their members the opportunity to track their greenhouse gas emissions as part of their science-based approach to sustainability certification.”

For more information about the EarthCheck GHG Database and Accounting Tool for accurately measuring and tracking carbon emissions, please contact Dr Rawan Nimri.