ECTAA Engagement


There are many positive aspects to travel and tourism. It connects people and brings the world closer through shared experiences, cultural awareness and community building. It generates income, provides jobs, spurs investment and development, and is a key driver for socio-economic progress.

However, it is undeniable that travel and tourism also have negative aspects; Tourism puts enormous stress on local land use, and can lead to soil erosion, increased pollution, natural habitat loss, and more pressure on endangered species. These effects could gradually destroy the resources on which tourism itself depends.

Tourism is also a significant emitter of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and thus significantly contributes to the climate crisis. According to WTTC’s recent research the sector is responsible for 8,1% of global greenhouse gas emissions in 2019.  The impact of climate change is felt worldwide. Rising water levels, more extreme weather conditions and natural disasters threaten community livelihoods everywhere and impact in particular tourism.

There is an urgent need to decarbonize the travel and tourism industry and continue managing the impacts of tourism on destinations and local communities. The industry must strive to minimize the negative impacts while stimulating the positive impact, without compromising the travel experience of the customer.

The mission of ECTAA is to work with its Members and other stakeholders to accelerate and strengthen the transition to a more sustainable travel and tourism industry, by providing a forum for collaboration, partnership, education and learning and promoting and supporting the uptake of sustainable practices and tools within the industry.

As part of its commitment to support a more sustainable travel and tour industry, ECTAA is a signatory of the following:



1. Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism

In November 2021 ECTAA signed the Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism. As a signatory of the Glasgow Declaration, ECTAA recognizes the need to accelerate climate action in tourism and to secure strong actions and commitment to support the global goals to halve emissions over the next decade and reach Net Zero emissions as soon as possible before 2050. As part of this commitment, ECTAA has adopted end of 2022 a Climate Action Plan based on the five shared pathways – measure, decarbonize, regenerate, collaborate and finance.

As part of this commitment, ECTAA has adopted end of 2022 a Climate Action Plan based on the five shared pathways – measure, decarbonize, regenerate, collaborate and finance. In December 2023, a first report on the implementation of the ECTAA Climate Action Plan providing an overview of the actions undertaken in the frame of the 5 pathways in 2023 was issued.

2. UNWTO Code of Ethics

In November 2013, ECTAA signed the UNWTO Code of Ethics for Tourism. By signing the Code, it commits to help maximizing the sector’s benefits while minimizing its potentially negative impact on the environment, cultural heritage and societies across the globe. The Code’s 10 articles cover the economic, social, cultural and environmental components of travel and tourism.  



3. Rhodes Declaration on the resilience of EU tourism in the climate crisis era

In April 2024, European travel and tourism representatives (A4E, ACI Europe, CLIA, ECTAA, EEIA, ERA, HOTREC, IAAPA, IRU and Ruraltour), spanning business and leisure sectors, convened in Rhodes to endorse a landmark declaration. This pledge outlines a roadmap for industry collaboration, focusing on decarbonization, enhanced cooperation, and engagement with policymakers to achieve sustainability goals.



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