The principles of sustainability refer to the environmental, economic and socio-cultural aspects of tourism development. To guarantee sustainability in the long run a suitable balance must be found between these three aspects. Sustainable tourism should make optimal use of environmental resources that account for needed elements in tourism development, helping to preserve biodiversity and natural heritage and maintaining essential ecological processes. Second the respect the host communities’ socio-cultural authenticity, contribute to tolerance and inter-cultural understanding and maintain their build an living cultural heritage and traditional values. And third the it should ensure viable, long-term economic operation, providing socio-economic advantages to all stakeholder that are fairly distributed, along with stable employment and income-earning chances and social services to host communities, and contributing to poverty alleviation.
Center Parcs is consciously working on sustainability. They got rewarded the ISO 140001 certificate, which makes them the only one in the sector. Despite this they want to further develop their sustainability by setting new goals for the future. Most important is that more and more tourists are also aware of travelling sustainable. A research of TUI (2010) showed that tourists are clearly interested in sustainable vacations. Half of the customers is willing to book a sustainable vacation if offered and 2 out of 3 customers would change his behavior, while on vacation, to help the environment. In 2012 nearly the same results came to surface. Sustainable tourism is upcoming and Center Parcs is already acting in on this.
Another trend is ‘global warming’.The climate is changing and and so are the weather patterns. Temperatures rise, rainfall patterns are shifting, melting snow and glaciers and the sea level is rising. Expected is that these changes will continue, extreme weather will result in hazard and floods and droughts will be more intense and will occure more frequently. This is also happening at the countries where Center Parcs is located. Most vulnerable are the sea-sides and the mountiness places. Since most Center Parcs parks are located in nature-full enviroments those locations will become vulnerable as well.
The temperatures in Europe are rising and this will result in hotter summer. People can decide to travel off-season, because of the hot summers. Since off-season weather in not always even reliable in this part of the world, tourists can decide to travel to destinations with more reliable weather conditions. This could resulst in less demand for Center Parcs, especially in the summer. Another point is that maintance costs for nature will rise. Weather patterns are intensivying and this could have its effect on nature. Extreme stroms could destroy nature surroundings and extreme drought could dessicate plants etc. Since Center Parcs is know for it nature-full enviroment, it will have to invest in the maintance of the nature in and arround the parks. Especially given the fact, that tourists prefer to have more nature around during their vacantions.
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