Travalyst exists to accelerate the positive impact of the travel and tourism industry.
As the organisation overseeing the delivery of the Travalyst coalition’s vision and mission, we recognise the role we must play in tackling the climate crisis. Therefore, we are committing to measuring and reducing our carbon footprint year on year to achieve net zero by 2030.
The target limit set out in the Paris Agreement – a 1.5°C increase in global temperatures – will still inevitably lead to a worldwide shift in our weather patterns and biodiversity. This, in turn, will negatively impact us all in the way we live. The frightening thing is that we are on course for a 3°C increase; this is a global crisis that requires all of us to act now.
Each industry has a role to play to meaningfully respond to climate change. This includes the travel and tourism industry, which accounts for at least 8% of the world’s total carbon footprint. It is our responsibility to work together – with stakeholders from across the industry – to influence systems change and meaningfully reduce those emissions.
We believe that travel can, and must, be a catalyst for good when it comes to climate change. If we can tackle the climate emergency head-on, as an industry, we can increase the positive impact travel can bring. If recent events have taught us anything, it is that we are more interconnected and vulnerable than we realised and that acting fast, collectively, matters. That means working together to redesign the way we travel and operate to have a greater positive impact on us and the world.
Reducing industry emissions is one of our core goals. First and foremost however, we’re looking at ourselves – the Travalyst organisation and employees – to ensure that we understand our own impact, and devise a plan for how we can reduce that impact to net zero1. We certainly aren’t perfect, but we are learning how to get there.
1 Want a cheat sheet for what ‘net-zero’ and other carbon-related terms really mean? See here, and below.
We started by finding out what our carbon emissions have been since the Travalyst organisation’s inception2. Given our small size and remote operating structure, we acknowledge that it may be simpler to measure the Travalyst organisation’s footprint compared with others. Nevertheless, we believe that every organisation, no matter how small, needs to know their footprint and ultimately reduce it. By knowing what emissions we put out, we can strive to lower them each year, and commit to reaching zero.
That’s why we are working with the sustainability consultancy ecollective to measure and reduce our footprint. By making small but effective changes, we believe that we can reduce the carbon emitted per employee each year in a financially responsible way.
2 Travalyst was set up in September 2019 which means that a significant amount of our emission-related operations were suspended due to COVID-19. This accounts for most of 2020 and 2021 and means that our emissions reductions are higher than anticipated. As the world begins to recover from COVID-19, we expect that our emissions reductions will not be as high in subsequent years.
Using 2019/20 as our base year, we commit to reducing our emissions each year by 8%, to achieve net zero by 2030.
To achieve this, we intend to take the following steps:
Calculating our own carbon footprint can be a little complex, as almost everything we do has some sort of footprint. To make sure we do it right, we partnered with ecollective to help us measure and improve our carbon footprint. Their calculations have been peer-reviewed by industry and are based on the latest data. This data is updated annually in order to improve accuracy over time.
For this project, we followed the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG Protocol) and applied emission factors provided by DEFRA and other data sources. This study measures the greenhouse gas emissions of the business. The areas in scope for this study include:
Carbon calculations are never perfect but our aim is to make the measurements and our abatement plan better each year. As new guidelines, protocols and better data are developed, we will revise our measurement framework, targets and abatement plan to ensure our climate action plan remains ambitious and up-to-date. To keep ourselves accountable and open to critique, we are happy to share our methodology. Just email us or ecollective to find out more.
A team of self-confessed carbon geeks, ecollective is committed to helping businesses fight the climate crisis. They do this by making it as simple as possible to measure carbon performance today and providing the tools to improve it tomorrow; helping to find sustainable solutions that benefit the business, the customer and the planet.
If you would like to find out more, see the website or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Please see the documents here for more information on how our carbon footprint is calculated, and what all the lexicon related to net zero really means.
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As Travalyst continues to grow, we want to hear from like-minded people and companies in the travel industry. If you want to learn more about what you can do through your company or organisation to be a catalyst for change, provide your details here.