Ministry investigates climate change’s effects on tourism

Ministry investigates climate change’s effects on tourism

Ministry investigates climate change’s effects on tourism

The Culture and Tourism Ministry is working to detect the effects of climate change on the tourism sector and take measures in this regard, Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy has said.

Upon Yunus Emre, a deputy of the Republican People’s Party (CHP), submitting a motion to the parliament asking about the measures taken against drought and the decrease in water resources due to the climate crisis, Ersoy revealed that the ministry is preparing some reports on this issue.

“After detailed reports on the effects of climate change on the tourism sector and on the measures to be taken are completed, the ministry will implement some policies and proposals within the scope of the action plans to be prepared,” Ersoy said.

With these studies, planning principles regarding the shift of tourism season dates, and the effects of climate change on winter tourism and ecotourism will be revealed, Ersoy said.

“One of the studies carried out to create a sustainable tourism policy in our country is the Blue Flag program, and in this context, our country ranked third in the world with 519 beaches in 2021,” the minister said.

The Blue Flag is a certification given by the Copenhagen-based, not-for-profit, non-governmental organization, Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE). A blue flag is awarded to a beach, marina, or sustainable boating tourism operator that meets its environmental standards.

“In the upcoming period, increasing the number of Blue Flag beaches and bringing our country to higher ranks is among the goals of our ministry,” Ersoy added.

The minister also pointed out that in a bid to protect the environment, an “environmentally-friendly accommodation facility certificate” is issued to the facilities that meet the necessary conditions.

Citing that 449 facilities across Türkiye have this certificate, Ersoy announced that a total sum of 62.77 million Turkish Liras ($3.44 million) was paid to these facilities.

Reiterating that the practice of issuing a “bicycle-friendly accommodation facility certificate” initiated in order to promote bicycle tourism within the scope of sustainable tourism targets began in the second half of 2020, Ersoy stated that this certificate has already been issued for 20 hotels.

Meanwhile, Ersoy stated that 642,444 visitors to Türkiye for health and medical reasons generated $1.04 billion in revenue last year.