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Joint UN-Victoria University tourism climate initiative launched in Copenhagen

Victoria University's Centre for Tourism and Services Research (CTSR) today announced its collaboration with a new Travel and Tourism climate initiative "Live the Deal" launched in Copenhagen. CTSR will supply underpinning research for implementing the initiative across the globe.

Live the Deal, an innovative, global campaign to help travel companies and destinations respond to climate change, reduce their carbon footprint and move to the green economy, was launched during the Copenhagen Climate Summit.

The campaign will be underpinned by a simple carbon calculation tool that allows easy correlation with government targets and implementation measures, as well as a Think Tank and Annual Innovations & Investment Summit.

Announcing the new initiative, long time green tourism campaigner Geoffrey Lipman, assistant Secretary General of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and adjunct professor at CTSR said: "Copenhagen represents a new commitment by the world community towards sustainable low carbon growth patterns."

"The targets and mitigation actions that countries develop and negotiate through this process will be a new base or travel industry action. What we are providing is a very simple way to get behind the evolving government initiatives, to keep pace with changing patterns and to demonstrate that our sector is acting, not simply talking.

"We should not be ashamed to promote the growth of smart travel "" clean green, ethical and quality "" it's the lifeblood of trade, commerce and human connection.

"Live the Deal follows the pattern established in the UN-led Copenhagen Seal the Deal campaign by its single-minded focus, its simplicity and its broad based engagement goals. It will seek to encourage the sector directly and through representative organisations.

"It has been developed with the support of UNWTO, whose Secretary General Taleb Rifai calls it "the kind of link between global policymaking and responsible tourism action that we are looking to inspire and encourage'.

"Our sector fuels the economy, creates jobs and is one of the biggest development opportunities for the world's poorest countries "" and it can be a leader in the transformation to a green economy."

The inaugural Summit will be in Abu Dhabi in the last quarter of the 2010. Live the Deal will be promoted by a multimedia video We Can Take this Climate Change from platinum album writer and Melbourne-based singer Alston Koch which will be profiled around the world in 2010.

See the animated video at: www.greenearth.travel.

CTSR Professor Terry DeLacy said Victoria University will work with UNWTO and other stakeholders to roll out the initiative across the world. Discussions are being held with public and private tourism stakeholders in Indonesia for Bali to be the first destination to implement the initiative.

Professor DeLacy is available for interview: 03 9919 5349; terry.delacy@vu.edu.au.

Media contact: Jim Buckell, A/Senior Media Officer

Marketing and Communications Department, Victoria University

Ph: (03) 9919 4243; mobile: 0400 465 459; email: jim.buckell@vu.edu.au

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