TTAL takes conservation efforts underwater
Posted Nov 13, 2020
In keeping with the Tobago Tourism Agency Limited’s (TTAL) ongoing strategy of promoting sustainable tourism development, the organization once again collaborated with local stakeholders to undertake environmental conservation initiatives - this time under water.
In September 2020, CEO Louis Lewis and accompanying TTAL officials embarked on a diving expedition with ERIC (Environmental Research Institute Charlotteville), to plant critically endangered Staghorn Corals on a reef located off the coast of Pirates Bay. The initiative was environmentally necessary in preserving Tobago’s marine heritage and assets for future generations of residents and visitors alike.
Mr. Louis Lewis, TTAL CEO stated: “Corals are the building blocks of our island’s marine heritage, serving a number of benefits for our local marine life, and enhancing the livelihoods of Tobagonians who depend on the ocean for economic or recreational purposes. Furthermore, these environmental efforts are not only critical to addressing climate change and biodiversity, but also seek to maximize the potential of tourism to contribute to the blue economy.”
This marine conservation initiative followed closely on the heels of a collaborative coastal zone management exercise between TTAL and ERIC in August, where the team planted trees along the island’s coastlines to mitigate against coastal erosion. These activities - along with ongoing environmental programs such as Green Key and Blue Flag - strategically align with TTAL’s ongoing efforts to enhance the environmental sustainability and eco-tourism offerings of Destination Tobago.
Dr. Sherma Roberts, Chairperson of TTAL’s Board of Directors stated:
“As our destination's branding of unspoilt, untouched and undiscovered suggests, the strength of our tourism product lies in Tobago’s natural assets: beautiful landscapes and stunning seascapes that visitors flock to in search of escape, and a direct connection with nature itself. This coral planting initiative is not only environmentally necessary, but is also key to supporting and preserving Tobago’s tourism product and patrimony."
The Tobago Tourism Agency Limited will continue to be an advocate for responsible tourism initiatives, and looks forward to collaborating with local NGO’s to direct change and development within the industry while enhancing the sustainability of destination.