Mediterranean Standard For Sustainable Tourism (MESST) – General Requirements, Objectives And The Philosophy Of MESST
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A. A. Zorpas, P. Tsartas, G. Aristidis & O. Theoharous
Tourism is an activity that can have a truly major impact on sustainable development. EU recorded in excess of 440m visitor arrivals in 2005. Tourism, directly and indirectly, accounts for around 10% of European GDP and 20m jobs. Europeans account for over half of all international travel, and visits by Europeans provide an important source of income for many developing countries. In 2005 the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) identified an agenda of 12 aims for sustainable tourism. The EU Sustainable Development Strategy (SDS) has three key objectives: Economic prosperity, Social equity and cohesion and Environmental protection. Tourism businesses could function properly under the sustainability model and they have mentioned \“environmental education programmes” and \“establishment of co-operation and partnerships among local, regional and state stakeholders and authorities” as the most sustainable actions. The standard is and must be applicable to any organization that wishes to (a) Increase the environmental responsibility of tourism enterprises, (b) Increase the capacity of local administration on monitoring sustainable tourism, (c) Create a transactional network of shared planning and management policies for sustainable tourism, (d) Exchange best practices and knowledge in the field of sustainable tourism. This paper briefly describes the general requirements of MESST. Keywords: sustainable development, tourism environment, Mediterranean standard, MESST, quality management, environment.
sustainable development, tourism environment, Mediterranean standard, MESST, quality management, environment.