Green awards go to dive resorts

The Cayman Islands Environmental
project for the Tourism Sector has helped create two successes for participants
in the scheme.

Cobalt Coast and Compass
Point, both dive resorts, have gained Green Globe Certification.

Green Globe is a highly regarded
certification for the travel and tourism industry that demonstrates a
commitment to improving environmental performance and efficient operations,
said a release by the Department of Tourism.

Earlier this year, the Queen Elizabeth
II Botanic
Park was the first Botanic Park
in the Caribbean region to gain certification.

The Cayman Islands Environmental
Project for the Tourism Sector, a joint pilot project between the Departments
of Tourism and Environment and the tourism private sector.

Standards

Both resorts had to apply 248
standards, implement various environmental practices and have an independent
third party audit completed in order to attain certification. Green Globe is
also ISO 17021 compliant therefore ensuring the highest international
standards.

“Being able to display the Green
Globe on your website and marketing materials really is an incredible badge of
honour and one that will reap rewards in terms of cost savings and the
significant promotional benefits that come hand-in-hand with the
Certification,” said Oneisha Richards, the Department of Tourism’s Deputy
Director responsible for Product Development.

“However certification comes at a
price. Both properties have had to work extremely hard to get to this stage…and
will need to continue doing so in order to turn their green efforts into
sustainable, long term goals for staff and guests alike,” continued Mrs.
Richards.

Green teams

Both resorts have specially
appointed green teams, which implement and oversee their green programmes.
Cobalt Coast Dive Resort’s environmental best practices include using a two-button
system for toilet flushing in the guest bathrooms, reusing old towels and staff
uniform T-shirts as cleaning rags, collecting recycling oil from compressors
and kitchen cooking oil for reuse off-site by a local biofuel company and
delivering glass bottles and used batteries to the landfill for disposal.

Arie Barendrecht, proprietor of Cobalt Coast
commented: “As a dive resort we are already dealing with a concerned clientele,
so going the extra mile to operate in a more responsible and concerned manner
fits in perfectly.”

Compass Point Dive Resort’s
environmental best practices include identifying an energy automatic control
system for guestrooms, using biodegradable/environmentally friendly
housekeeping chemicals in the resort and bio-diesel in the dive shop
operations, composting and sorting of solid waste into recyclable and
non-recyclable materials. 

LOCALgreenawardsSTORY

Cobalt Coast’s green team are, from left, Arie Barendrecht, Dora Valdez and Sherma Thomas.
Photo: Submitted
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