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Environment: EU Eco-label extended to campsites

Campers now have the opportunity to turn to the `Flower` logo of the EU Eco-label to find an environmentally friendly camp site…

Campers now have the opportunity to turn to the `Flower` logo of the EU Eco-label to find an environmentally friendly camp site. Companies providing campsite services in Europe can apply for the EU Eco-label to show that they meet strict environmental performance criteria. European consumers have long been able to rely on the Flower to help them find greener products and services. They have already given a very enthusiastic welcome to the Eco-label criteria for tourist accommodation services, which were adopted in 2003 to promote environment friendly holidays.



EU Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas said: Europe is the world`s most popular tourist destination, and environmental protection is crucial to the long-term viability of this major sector. The EU Eco-label for campsites encourages stronger environmental protection and is a unique marketing opportunity for campsites to show they are working in harmony with the environment. Campers can rely on the Flower to guarantee the campsite`s sound environmental performance – it makes it easy to choose `green`.



Consumer demand for greener holidays



The trend towards more environmentally friendly tourism services has steadily increased in recent years, with consumers becoming more and more demanding in their quest for greener holidays. Satisfying this demand is increasingly seen by the tourism industry as a key to success. One recent study in Germany[1] showed that 51% of tourists opt for environmentally friendly resorts and accommodation, while 82% prefer an intact environment.



Considering the high number of campsites in Europe (over 24,000[2] in 2000) and the obvious importance of a clean environment in choosing this type of holiday, the need to provide consumers with reliable ecological criteria for camp site services is clear.



Eco-label criteria



Camping guests love nature. An unspoilt environment and the ability to prove that the environment is being respected give any campsite a clear advantage over its competitors.

To be awarded the European Eco-label a campsite must meet strict minimum standards on environmental performance and health. These should include the use of renewable energy sources, an overall reduction in energy and water consumption, measures to reduce waste, environmental policy setting and the provision of ample environmental and safety information to guests.

Getting the Flower demands a little extra effort but, significantly, it also provides added value by helping campsite operators to focus on improving their ecological and economic performance. By reducing energy and water consumption they can be more profitable while at the same time protecting the environment.



Background



The EU Eco-label scheme was established in 1992 to promote products and services with a reduced environmental impact. Each EU Member State has a competent authority, which provides information on how to apply, checks compliance, and helps companies that want to earn the right to get the Eco-label Flower.

There are currently 25 different product groups, including textiles and footwear, detergents, household appliances, paper products, paints, tourist accommodation and many others. Work on other product groups, such as soaps and shampoos, printed paper, heat pumps and furniture, is ongoing.

More than 235 licences have been awarded so far, covering several hundred different products and services.

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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