Open letter to South Africa’s students‚ universities and government‚ represented by Minister in the .
All future events at Durban's International Convention Centre (ICC) will be as "green as possible" following the granting of full membership of the Heritage Environmental Rating Programme to the institution.
The programme is Southern Africa's only tourism-based environmental management system.
Membership of the body requires the ICC to reduce and manage its impact on the environment by introducing initiatives such as resource management, procurement practices, human resource development, marketing and operational performance.
The chief executive of the ICC, Miller Matola, has ensured that a "subtle green tinge" will settle over the ICC. "This is an exciting challenge for us."
He said one of the first high-profile events to feel the impact of the "green machine" would be this year's Tourism Indaba in May.
Greg McManus, managing director of the Heritage Environmental Rating Programme, said his organisation would assist in "greening" the 2008 Indaba.
"This will not only help position the ICC as a responsible business venue, but play a major role in ensuring the centre makes Indaba as environmentally correct as possible, setting a benchmark for other travel and tourism-related events in South Africa," he said.
"Representatives from the Heritage programme move on site this month and in cooperation with ICC staff will set targets and measurable goals for Indaba.
"They are going to work hard, particularly on improving green awareness among delegates and exhibitors."