Industry Reports

The new 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter & My Green Butler

The founder of My Green Butler, Dr Christopher Warren had the honour of signing the new 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter at a wonderful event that took place at Magna Carta House in London on 6th November, 2022.

The 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter is a revised version of the 2022 Cape Town Declaration which was the founding statement of Responsible Tourism. The original declaration grew from South Africa’s commitment to developing responsible tourism guidelines and has essentially defined the pathway for sustainability in the global tourism arena ever since by encouraging localised action that generates change where it matters.

Dr Christopher Warren, the founder of My Green Butler, also runs the Australia & Dubai branch of the International Centre for Responsible Tourism. This ICRT Worldwide network shares a common purpose in developing and promoting the concept of Responsible Tourism as defined in the Cape Town Declaration – and now updated in the new 2022 charter – through advocacy, education, training, research, and consultancy.

My Green Butler was developed as a solution for hospitality businesses who need to take their sustainability action to the next level by introducing consistent monitoring and target setting as opposed to simply ticking “green” checklists and conducting an annual audit.

There is undoubtedly much to be done, and the new 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter provides the necessary unified guidelines to work towards. There is no one global solution. In fact, responsible tourism action is defined by addressing issues that matter the most in each destination, but the following principles of the new charter provide a North star to work towards.

Responsible Tourism:

  • Recognises that greenhouse gas emissions, plastic waste, and biodiversity extinction are global issues requiring local action, potable water is an issue in many places, but not everywhere;
  • Sets goals, measures, and reports efforts to minimise negative economic, environmental, and social impacts, including crowding and overtourism;
  • Generates greater economic benefits for local people and enhances the well-being of host communities by providing better employment conditions, developing shared value with local businesses to create more and better livelihoods and addressing the economic needs of th economically poor and marginalised;
  • Involves local people in decisions that affect their communities, their lives and life chances
  • Makes positive contributions to the conservation of natural and cultural heritage, to the maintenance of the world’s diversity, lived cultures and cultural monuments;
  • Addresses biodiversity loss and is nature-positive,
  • Provides inclusive employment for the differently abled and people of diverse ethnicities, gender and sexual orientation;
  • Provides more enjoyable experiences for all, through more meaningful connections with local people and a greater understanding of local history and culture and social and environmental issues; and
  • Offers culturally sensitive experiences engendering respect between tourists and hosts and building local pride and confidence.

The full Charter can be viewed here.


Sarah Habsburg