The New York Times recently profiled the rise of the philanthropic vacation, an industry that is estimated to have grown 15 percent in the past two years. Some getaways are more luxurious than hands-on, but all reveal a desire on the part of their participants to connect with people and places they would otherwise only read about or see on TV.
December 10, 2007
Ski resorts in the U.S. (and the world) view themselves as chic poster boys for global warming. With temperatures rising, one of the first visible phenomenon is less snow at resort-level altitudes. Projections in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains and the Rockies look at 5-6 degree temperature increases by 2100 if global warming is not dramatically reduced. Snow pack would fall by 89%. Ski resorts have embraced anti-global warming politics and measures with a bear hug.
December 7, 2007
Looking for a new type of vacation? Maybe you should consider agritourism—agricultural tourism—where vacationers go to farms and can participate in a variety of farm activities. A growing part of the tourism industry, agritourism is being touted as a way for local farmers to supplement their income, educate the public, and expand people’s appreciation of how food is made.
November 25, 2007
Landscapers, who literally design and dig with nature’s chlorophyll green every day, are placing stepping stones toward the greater architecture design community adopting eco-sustainability. On November 2, 2007, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) unveiled a report intended to instruct architects, designers and facility managers on specific ways (and thresholds) they can craft their buildings into natural ecological fits, sustainability, mitigating pollution and climate change effects.
November 3, 2007
Picture Henry David Thoreau, writing On Walden Pond, down in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. Emerald palm fronds stirring in immense tracts of subtropical ecology, diamond white beaches limned by tropical sun, a thatch hut woven against rain. Henry is writing contemplatively in his little eco-world that he is visiting. Then, a sound startles him. A diesel generator cranking up to power something very materialistic like air conditioning. His eco-tourist experience just went sour. He has just been “greenwashed.”
October 24, 2007