Sustainable tourism information is now prominently featured in the new Calaveras Visitors Guide on pages 4 and 48 in the form of our Hop Lightly leave-no-trace guidelines. Getting the word out about leave-no-trace principles is essential to maintaining these environments for the future – and so we are asking our business and community partners to share this information on their websites and social media platforms. In addition, we continue to expand the Hop Lightly program parameters to have a wider impact.
Sustainable Tourism: Single-Use Plastics Reduction
As part of our Hop Lightly tourism sustainability initiative, we now have Hop Lightly Hydrate stainless steel water bottles for sale at the Calaveras Visitors Center, which come with a free water fill up. We’re hoping these bottles will help Calaveras locals and tourists reduce their use of single-use plastic water bottles.Your business can be involved by becoming a HYDRATION STATION. Just let us know if you’re willing to hydrate our Calaveras visitors at your place of business by refilling these water bottles (plain old potable tap water is fine), and we’ll add you to an online list that we’ll be promoting to our visitors.
Sustainable Tourism: Practical Solutions
In another development, we’re giving away PACK-IT-OUT biodegradable bags to visitors when they let us know they’re visiting our parks, lakes, hiking trails and wilderness areas, to encourage them to help keep Calaveras’ environment beautiful. These bags could be at your place of business too. Let us know if you’re interested in getting them into the hands of your outdoorsy clients, and we’ll get a supply to you.
Sustainable Tourism: Business Recognition
This year, we will also be recognizing local businesses for their sustainability initiatives in our annual Innovations in Tourism Awards. This new awards category is designed to encourage our tourism industry to find ways to reduce waste and save energy – attributes that actually drive more tourism to active destinations.
Sustainable Tourism: Clean-Up Efforts Support
In support of our local communities and outdoor environments impacted by tourism, the CVB is also actively seeking information on Calaveras County creek, lake, river and trail clean-ups so that we can support these efforts. Businesses, organizations and civic groups are encouraged to contact the CVB so we can publish the details in our online calendar and partner newsletters with the goal of attracting more volunteers.
Waste Reduction Economic Benefit Program
Right in line with our Hop Lightly environmental sustainability initiative is Calaveras County’s new inclusion in the RMDZ (Recycling Marketing Development Zone) program obtained by Calaveras County’s Economic Development Director, Kathy Gallino.
This program combines recycling with economic development to fuel new businesses, expand existing ones, create jobs, and divert waste from landfills. If your business, or a business you know of uses materials from the waste stream to manufacture their products, the RMDZ program offers loans, technical assistance and free product marketing. Call 209-754-6742 or email Kathy for more information.