The ECU Center for Sustainability is a partner in the NC GreenTravel Initiative, which has named the Uptown Greenville Umbrella Market its 100th North Carolina business to be recognized for use of sustainable practices that save energy and protect the environment. The Umbrella Market is a Greenville farmer’s market that features locally-grown food and a free shuttle providing transportation.
Pat Long, director of the ECU Center for Sustainability, is pictured with the ECU-developed travel care code, which encourages travelers to take a pledge to travel responsibly.
The GreenTravel Initiative helps tourists locate lodging, restaurants and activities that will enable them to visit an area while making a positive impact on the environment, society and economy. The program began in 2011 as a joint effort between the ECU center, the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, N.C. Department of Commerce and the Waste Reduction Partners.
Tourism-focused businesses apply for the program and are selected through a grading system that measures environmentally friendly practices used to conserve energy and water, reduce waste, recycle and protect the environment.
More than 50 million tourists visited North Carolina in 2013, according to the state Department of Commerce. Among those visitors, more and more are seeking out businesses that maintain sustainable practices. The NC GreenTravel Initiative helps by identifying those businesses.
“We know our tourism economy depends upon the protection of our nationally recognized travel offerings,” said Pat Long, director of the ECU Center for Sustainability.
“It will only be enhanced by sending a clear message that North Carolina tourism providers are working hard to limit energy and water use, reduce waste generation, and still provide the quality vacation and business travel experience travelers have become accustomed to.”
For additional information on NC GreenTravel, visit http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/deao/ncgreentravel
For more information on the ECU Center for Sustainability, visit http://www.ecu.edu/cs-tecs/sustainabletourism/index.cfm.
For information on the Travel Care Code developed by the center, visit http://www.ecu.edu/news/travelcarecode.cfm.