GSTC Recognized Standards
The following standards have been Recognized as aligned with the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria for hotels and tour operators. (The standard Recognized by GSTC is not necessarily the one currently published on the standard owner's website due to time delays securing stakeholder approval within the individual organization. Please contact the standard owner directly if you need to check whether their listed standard is the one that has been GSTC Recognized.)
GSTC Recognition does not ensure that the certification process is reliable, only that the standard includes the minimum elements to ensure sustainability
Austrian Ecolabel for Tourism (Österreichisches Umweltzeichen)
The Austrian Ecolabel stands for higher living standards and environmental quality, clear and transparent information, highly informative, environmental policy in ownership of companies & organizations, high-level cooperation with excellent facilities.
Biosphere Responsible Tourism
ITR is an independent organization and its purpose is implementing actions and programs of sustainable development in the touristic industry. ITR follows the recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED, Rio 1992), and of the guidelines from several programs of the World Tourism Organization and UNESCOabout sustainable development and cultural and natural heritage protection.
ITR created and developed the Responsible Tourism System (STR), which is recognized by BIOSPHERE RESPONSIBLE TOURISM label. The STR promotes the sustainable touristic activities so that responsible tourism can be a specific touristic product. (http://www.biospheretourism.com/)
Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST) for hotels
The Certification for Sustainable Tourism Program - CST - is a product of the Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT). The CST was designed to differentiate businesses of the tourism sector, based on the degree to which they comply with a sustainable model of natural, cultural and social resource management.CST is regulated by the Costa Rican National Accreditation Commission and consists of a scale of 5 "levels" of sustainable tourism achievement. (http://www.turismo-sostenible.co.cr/en/)
EarthCheck Company Standard
EarthCheck is used by travel and tourism organisations around the world, to validate their carbon claims and guide their sustainability initiatives. It is the largest environmental benchmarking, certification and management solution in use by this industry and the leading program in-market. (www.earthcheck.org)
The Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) has a diverse role, but one that in essence is all about creating and fostering relationships. The MTA is the tourism industry’s regulator and motivator, its business partner, the country’s brand promoter, and is here to form, maintain and manage meaningful partnerships with all tourism stakeholders. Primarily, this means talking to visitors to the Islands, but also to work closely alongside the private sector partners. Importantly, the MTA is also here to help strengthen the industry’s human resources, ensure the highest standards and quality of the Islands’ tourism product, and foster relations with local and international media. http://www.mta.com.mt/eco-certification)
Ecotourism Australia's ecotourism standard & advanced ecotourism standard
Ecotourism Australia was formed in 1991 as an incorporated non-profit organisation, and is the peak national body for the ecotourism industry. The organisation has a diverse membership that includes key industry sectors and including ecotourism accommodation, tour and attraction operators; tourism planners; protected area managers, and other government agencies; academics and students; tourism, environmental, interpretation and training consultants; local and regional tourism associations and travellers. (www.ecotourism.org.au)
Ecotourism Ireland Certification Programme
Ecotourism Ireland is an organisation set up to stimulate the development of ecotourism countrywide. To achieve these ends we have facilitated the development of an ecotourism quality label that we hope will stimulate the development of new ecotourism experiences in Ireland and at the same time defend the ethical values of existing ecotourism operators. In addition the label has been designed to guide visitors travel choices and help them to choose promoters of ecotourism products and the experiences they have on offer. (http://www.ecotourismireland.ie/)
European Ecotourism Labeling Standard (EETLS)
The European Ecotourism Knowledge Network (ECOLNET) is a 3-year project (2010-2013) co-financed by the European Commission, Lifelong Learning Programme, Transversal Programmes, Key Activity 3 – ICT Networks. ECOLNET has a dual aim: a) to create an Ecotourism network to bring together a variety of stakeholders and b) to develop innovative evaluation tools and learning products for sharing knowledge among the network and facilitating quality certification through the European Ecotourism Labelling Standard (EETLS). (http://www.ecotourism-network.eu/en-about-us/en-ecolnet)
Fair Trade Tourism (FTT)
Fair Trade Tourism is a non-profit organisation in South Africa that promotes sustainable tourism development. We do this through awareness raising, research and advocacy, capacity building and by facilitating the world’s first tourism Fair Trade certification programme. FTT awards the use of special label to qualifying businesses as a way of signifying their commitment to Fair Trade criteria including fair wages and working conditions, fair purchasing, fair operations, equitable distribution of benefits and respect for human rights, culture and environment. By electing to stay at or use the services of an FTT-certified establishment, tourists are assured that their travel benefits local communities and economies, and that the business is operated ethically and in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. (www.fairtourismsa.org.za)
Green Globe Certification
Green Globe Certification traces its roots back to the United Nations Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit in 1992, where 182 heads of state from around the world endorsed the Agenda 21 principles of sustainable development. The Green Globe Standard is a structured assessment of the sustainability performance of travel and tourism businesses and their supply chain partners. Businesses can monitor improvements and document achievements leading to certification of their enterprises’ sustainable operation and management. All Green Globe Certifications are awarded after confirmation of compliance by an independent, third party auditor as required under international conventions covering quality management systems. (http://greenglobe.com/)
Green Star Hotel Certificate
The Green Star Hotel Certificate for tourist’s accommodation businesses is awarded to tourist accommodations in Egypt for their commitment in the field of environmentally friendly management and social responsibility. The Green Star Hotel Certification Programme is a national certification and capacity building programme under the patronage of the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism. It has been developed as a public private project between the key stakeholders from the German and Egyptian tourism market , the Egyptian tourism authorities and the German International Cooperation to enhance the quality and environmental awareness and raise the competiveness and environmental performance of the Egyptian tourist accommodation industry. By starting with the key sector in the Egyptian tourism industry, the hotel sector, a first step is taken to move the whole tourism sector towards more sustainability. On the long run, other sectors such as cruise ships and diving should follow. (www.greenstarhotel.org)
Hoteles+ Verdes (AHT)
Hoteles + Verdes –the ecolabel of the Argentinean Hotel Association (AHT)- promotes the adoption of good practices in sustainable hotel management. The Argentine Sustainability Hospitality Program recognizes and certifies those hotels in Argentina that proves being sustainable, environmentally and socially responsible with its stakeholders.
Japan Environmentally Sustainable Accommodations International Standard (ESAIS)
Japan Ecolodge Association (ECOLA) endeavors to disseminate the ecolodge concepts by offering the GSTC recognized JEnvironmentally Sustainable Accommodations International Standard (ESAIS) and the certification program. We firmly believe that the locally operated low-impact nature-based lodges with educational and interpretative programs can lead to help conservation and improve sustainability of surrounding nature while revitalizing the local economy. (http://www.japan-ecolodge.org/english/gaiyou.php)
Rainforest Alliance standard for tourism operations
The Rainforest Alliance works with hotels, restaurants and other tourism businesses to help them improve their environmental, social and economic practices. Through training and technical assistance, we teach them how to operate sustainably and verify their progress toward this goal. Those enterprises that meet our requirements are eligible to receive promotional benefits, including the use of the Rainforest Alliance Verified™ mark. (http://www.rainforest-alliance.org/tourism/verification)
Sistema de Distinción en Turismo Sustentable (SERNATUR)
The Chilean national system for distinction of sustainable tourism recognize the efforts of tourist accommodation that have progressed in any field of sustainability, differentiating its members over their competitors while ensuring visitors each organization's commitment to sustainability.