The OECS became a “supporting organization” signatory of the Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism launched at COP26 on November 4, 2021. The Glasgow Declaration’s objective is to raise the climate ambition of tourism stakeholders and secure strong actions to support the global commitment to halve emissions by 2030 and reach Net Zero as far as possible before 2050.
Desirous of fulfilling its obligations, the OECS identified The Travel Foundation as a key collaborator and entered into discussions on the development and implementation of an OECS Tourism Climate Action Plan, aligned to the Glasgow Declaration. Areas of cooperation will be focused on research and analysis, consultation, capacity building and advocacy.
The OECS Council of Ministers: Tourism at its Seventh Meeting held in Dominica in July 2022, mandated that the OECS align its efforts for tourism with the ministries/departments of environment which lead on climate action in most Member States. Member States that have not yet done so have been encouraged to prepare Tourism Sector Adaptation Plans.
In March 2023, the OECS convened a joint senior tourism and environment senior officials meeting to discuss the approach to climate action in tourism, which endorsed the partnership with The Travel Foundation. The immediate work to be undertaken in collaboration with The Travel Foundation is a needs assessment to consider national plans and determine gaps and support required to build out the Tourism Climate Action Plan.
Applauding the collaboration, OECS Director General Dr. Didacus Jules, said: “The OECS is one of the most tourism dependent regions in the world and the tourism sector is highly vulnerable to climate change. It is critical that the tourism sector is brought on board as a climate change agent. We welcome this new partnership with The Travel Foundation. It is timely but urgent, and with this partnership we can move forward with an OECS Tourism Climate Action Plan.”
Jeremy Sampson, CEO of the Travel Foundation, noted, “We are hugely motivated by the vision behind this partnership and the opportunities it brings to create meaningful change and global leadership. It represents a significant step towards the implementation of solutions at scale that address the risks posed by climate change and increase the value that tourism brings to communities. We shall support the OECS and its members to put planning into action across the region, and demonstrate that tourism can, and must, adapt to become more resilient and equitable.”
The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) is an International Organisation dedicated to economic harmonisation and integration, protection of human and legal rights, and the encouragement of good governance among independent and non-independent countries in the Eastern Caribbean. The OECS came into being on June 18th, 1981, when seven Eastern Caribbean countries signed a treaty agreeing to cooperate with each other while promoting unity and solidarity among its members. The Treaty became known as the Treaty of Basseterre, so named in honor of the capital city of St. Kitts and Nevis where it was signed. The OECS today, currently has eleven members, spread across the Eastern Caribbean comprising Antigua and Barbuda, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and The Grenadines, British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Martinique and Guadeloupe.
Please visit our website for more information: www.oecs.int .
About Travel Foundation
The Travel Foundation is an international NGO, headquartered in the UK, which has been leading the way on key issues like climate change and equity in tourism, advocating for new approaches that improve benefits and long-term outcomes for local communities. The organisation is credited as co-author and implementing partner of the Glasgow Declaration alongside UNWTO and is recognised as one of the most influential independent organisations in the travel and tourism sector through key research such as the Invisible Burden of Tourism and the newly released Envisioning 2030 report, as well as its leadership in guiding the Future of Tourism Coalition.