Glossary

  • Accessible tourism

    Tourism that enables everyone, regardless of their functional limitation to participate in the tourism experience confidently, independently and with dignity, through the creation of universally accessible tourism products, services and environments, and to ensure that Universal Design is systemic throughout the tourism value chain.

  • Adventure tourism

    Adventure tourism involves exploration or travel to remote areas or extreme natural environments. Adventure travel may be any tourist activity, including two of the following three components: a physical activity, a cultural exchange or interaction and engagement with nature. This may include activities such as mountaineering, trekking, bungee jumping, mountain biking, rafting, zip-lining and rock climbing.

  • Biodegradable

    Biodegradable means that a substance can be broken down by living organisms such as microbes and bacteria and absorbed into the environment without leaving toxic or long-lived residual substances. Biodegradability is a desirable feature in products such as cleaning agents. Conventional cleaning agents will often release harmful phosphates and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as they break down, but biodegradable products will not.

  • Carbon footprint

    The total sets of greenhouse gas emissions caused by an organization, event, product or person, usually expressed in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide (CO2).”

  • Carbon offset

    A program in which a company, country, etc., reduces or offsets its carbon emissions through the funding of activities and projects that improve the environment. For example, an individual might purchase carbon offsets to compensate for the greenhouse gas emissions caused by personal air travel

  • Carbon trading

    A market-based mechanism designed to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in commerce and industry by creating an economic incentive. Also known as Emissions Trading or ‘Cap and Trade’

  • Community-based Tourism

    Community-based tourism (CBT) is tourism managed and owned by the community, with a major proportion of the benefits remain within the community, and a purpose of enabling visitors to increase awareness and learn about the community and local ways of life.

  • Compostable

    Compostable products are biodegradable, but with an added benefit: when they break down, they release valuable nutrients into the soil, aiding the growth of trees and plants. These products degrade within several months in an industrial composting facility and produce no toxic residues. Compostability is a desirable feature in traditionally-disposable products such as plates, bowls, cups and cutlery. These products are commonly made out of PLA (Polylactic acid), bagasse (sugarcane fibre) or vegetable starch. It is preferable to use disposable products that are labelled ‘compostable’ rather than just ‘biodegradable’.

  • Corporate Social Investment or CSI

    CSI is defined as any social development activity that is not undertaken for the purpose of generating business income. Corporate social investment (CSI) is external to the normal business activities of a company and is not primarily undertaken for purposes of increasing company profit, nor is it driven primarily as a marketing initiative, although it can help a company develop a competitive advantage. Rather, these projects aim to assist, benefit and empower marginalised individuals and communities. CSI has a strong developmental approach and utilises company resources to the benefit of individuals and communities.

  • Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR

    Corporate social responsibility is defined as business decision-making linked to ethical values, compliance with legal requirements and respect for people, communities and the environment.

  • Cultural tourism

    Tourism concerned with an area’s culture, specifically the lifestyle of the people in those geographical areas, the history of those people, their art, architecture, religion(s), and other elements that helped shape their way of life. Cultural tourism includes tourism in urban areas, particularly historic or large cities and their cultural facilities such as museums and theatres. It can also include tourism in rural areas showcasing the traditions of indigenous cultural communities (i.e. festivals, rituals), and their values and lifestyle.

  • Dual Flush toilets

    A dual-flush toilet is a variation of the flush toilet that uses two buttons or handles to flush different levels of water. It has been proven to save up to 67% of water usage in the flushing process.

  • Ecological footprint

    An ’ecological footprint’ is a description of the ecological impact a company or group of people have on the earth. The bigger the footprint the worse the impact.

  • Ecotourism

    Ecotourism is responsible travel to natural, and often protected, areas that strive to be low impact and (often) small scale. Its purpose is to educate the traveller; contribute funds for ecological conservation; directly benefit the economic development and political empowerment of local communities; and foster respect for different cultures and for human rights.

  • Green building

    A building which is energy efficient, resource efficient and environmentally responsible – which incorporates design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate its negative impact on the environment and its occupants.

  • Greenwashing

    The act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company or the environmental benefits of a product or service.

  • Greywater

    Wastewater from bath tubs, showers, washbasins and washing machines

  • Integrated Waste Management

    A comprehensive strategic plan for the integrated management of waste which must apply the hierarchy of waste management – Reduce Reuse Recycle

  • Pro-poor tourism

    The Pro-Poor Tourism Partnership defines pro-poor tourism as “tourism which provides net benefits for poor people” (WTO, 2002:65). Pro-Poor Tourism does not mean that the poverty is the attraction, PPT is an overall approach designed to unlock opportunities for the economically poor and reduce levels of poverty in a community. Any form of tourism can contribute to poverty reduction.

  • Recyclable

    ‘Recyclable’ products can be collected and reprocessed to produce new items.

  • Recycling

    The process whereby discarded products and materials are reclaimed or recovered, refined or reprocessed, and converted into new or different products.

  • Re-using

    Using an item again for the same purpose for which is was original made, e.g. re-using a container such as a bottle or glass jar

  • Sustainable living

    Living in such a way that we meet the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It means that development must be “Development that delivers basic environmental, economic and social services to all without threatening the viability of the natural, built and social systems upon which these services depend.”

  • Sustainable tourism

    The UNWTO (World Tourism Organisation) defines sustainable tourism as:
    Tourism that meets the needs of present tourists and host regions while protecting and enhancing opportunity for the future.

  • Universal access

    Universal access refers to the ability of all people to have equal opportunity and access to a service or product from which they can benefit, regardless of their social class, ethnicity, background or physical disabilities

  • Universal design

    The design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.

  • Voluntourism

    Tourism in which travellers do voluntary work to help communities or the environment in the places they are visiting. The types of volunteer trips are diverse, from low-skill work cleaning up local wildlife areas to providing high-skill medical aid in a foreign country. Travellers who participate in volunteer holidays are diverse but typically share a desire to “do something good” while also experiencing new places and challenges in locations they might not otherwise visit. Volunteer travellers can also get involved with scientific research and education to promote the understanding and action necessary for a sustainable environment.

  • Waste reduction

    Reducing waste by using cleaner technology or buying goods that are not overpackaged; creating less waste by re-using discarded items, recovering recyclable materials from the waste stream and composting plant wastes.

  • Waste exchange

    Diverting waste materials or substances which have been discarded by one generator to another manufacturer who can use them as raw material in a different process.

  • Waste stream

    The total waste flow from an entity, comprising general and hazardous wastes. In the case of a municipality it will be all the waste that is generated by households, institutions, business and industry.

  • Waste stream analysis

    The process of sampling a mixed waste stream and measuring and recording the types and relative proportions of the different components.

  • Waste stream composition

    The types and relative quantities of wastes that make up the mixed waste stream e.g. paper, metal, glass, plastic, garden refuse, ash, etc

  • Zero Waste

    Zero Waste means designing and managing products and processes to reduce the volume and toxicity of waste and materials, conserve and recover all resources, and not burn or bury them. Implementing Zero Waste will eliminate all discharges to land, water or air that may be a threat to planetary, human, animal or plant health.