Hawaii tourism officials call for more sustainable industry

Hawaii tourism officials call for more sustainable industry

HONOLULU (AP) — As people flock back to Hawaii after more than a year of pandemic travel restrictions, some industry experts are calling for more environmentally responsible and sustainable forms of tourism. Crowded neighborhoods, highways and beaches are renewing calls for changes in the tourism industry, Hawaii Public Radio reported Wednesday. In 2019, Hawaii saw a record 10.4 million visitors come to the state. Travel to the islands was almost nonexistent for much of 2020 as coronavirus quarantine rules and travel restrictions were put in place. Now, daily arrivals are quickly approaching those seen before the pandemic. John De Fries, president and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority, said taking care of Hawaii's communities and land should be a major part of the hospitality industry's business model. Pauline Sheldon, professor and former dean of the University of Hawaii's School of Travel Industry Management, said “regenerative tourism” — a model she's studied in Canada and New Zealand — could be a way forward. Tourism officials have been pushing a sustainable agenda in a recent advertising campaign called Malama Hawaii. Malama is …
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