In 1997 Legambiente, the most widespread environmental association in Italy, launched the ecological label(ecolabel) “Recommended because of commitment to environmental protection”. This high quality brand distinguishes the accommodation facilities (hotels, camping, farm holidays, youth hostels, resorts, B&B) of coastal areas, inland areas, cities of art, natural parks and other tourist facilities that take measures in order to reduce the impact of its activities on the environment and to promote the surrounding area.
The general goal of Legambiente Tourism’s proposal is to reduce and/or to contain the charge on the territory in order to reduce the environmental impact on tourism; foster holidays more aware and full of quality and comfort ; involve local operators and tourists in an enduring and aware choice.
These are the guiding principles:
- increase the value of quality by taking the specificity of tourist industry and its organizational structure in small and qualified structures that are an asset appreciated by more and more customers;
- extend the rational use of the natural resources; support the collective and light mobility, the food safety but also invest in the specificities of the territory (which are often the reason of the trip) and the typical products, the artistic, cultural and environmental heritage of the place;
- enhance the diversity of situations in order to avoid too centered choices and the excessive homogenization of content;
- actively involve the participants in the definition of methods, procedures, criteria and measures (a necessary action in order to achieve a real improvement of environmental quality of tourism industry).
The relationships between the partners that take part in various of local projects are controlled by specific Memorandum of Understanding. In each of this agreements, touristic entrepreneurs, local authorities and Legambiente Tourism work hard to carry out their institutional roles: the representatives of the entrepreneurs select the companies and protect them. Legambiente Tourism sets the general goals, every year it define with the members the measure to take and monitor the respect of compulsory commitments; local authorities-also partners of many agreements- work hard to improve the management of services and the liveability of the destinations. In the agreements where there are not local public authorities, the parties work hard to intervene with combined actions towards public authorities and service companies.
Awards and prizes
- 2000: the city of Riccione is rewarded by the Italian Government (with 100 millions of Lire) because of its participation in the project of Legambiente Tourism
- 2002: the ecolabel Legambiente Tourism is registered in among the 50 ecolabel of International stage in the study of WTO (World Tourism Organization).
- 2003: Legambiente Tourism takes part with its structures in both the LIFE Med-Coast of the Province of Rimini and in the VISIT Eco-Lab. Both the projects receive, respectively in the categories of public and private, the first European prize for sustainable tourism “Carmen Diaz de Rivera”, promoted by the Government of Balearic Islands and by the Royal Award Foundation with the support of Environmental European Agency.
- 2005: two structures of Legambiente Tourism are selected in order to participate at the annual edition of Environmental Prize IHRA (International Hotel Restaurant Association).
- 2006: in January 2006 Legambiente Tourism is rewarded in Vienna by the Austrian Presidency of European Union because of the actions realized in transport and tourism.