- This certification will reposition the Riviera Nayarit within the important ecotourism segment. Huatulco is the only community on the entire American continent with this certification; now Nuevo Vallarta, Ixtapa Zihuatanejo and Loreto are seeking it as well.
The Riviera Nayarit Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) registered the Fraccionamiento Náutico Turístico Residencial Nuevo Vallarta into the EarthCheck international environmental certification.
Measuring sustainability in this touristic zone is important because of the density of hotel rooms, which makes it one of the communities with the largest number of tourists in the Riviera Nayarit.
The registration implies the implementation of an environmental management program, continual improvement and good environmental habits in order to obtain this certification. In order to achieve this they need to form a committee with representation from four sectors: the three levels of government, private initiatives, a charitable organization and academia.
The coordinator of the Huatulco, Ixtapa Zihuatanejo and Loreto EarthCheck programs, Lorenzo Alfaro, offered a presentation in Nuevo Vallarta on the Bays of Huatulco, the only community with this certificate on the entire American continent for the past ten years, in order to talk about the significance and importance of EarthCheck.
The event was attended by the hotels in Nuevo Vallarta that already have their EarthCheck certification, the Vallarta Yacht Club, the Nuevo Vallarta Homeowners Association, FIBBA and Nayarit’s Secretariat of Environment (Semanay, by its acronym in Spanish), among other authorities.
The central concepts of their policies include the efficient use of water, energy-efficient programs, recycling of solid waste products, noise control, biodiversity control, air quality control, protection of green areas and hazardous waste management.
“From what I’ve seen, Nuevo Vallarta definitely has enough potential to be certified,” said Alfaro. “The challenge is to find a starting point, make measurements, generate indicators and implement specific actions to improve them.”
This EarthCheck certification is independent of and a complement to the announcement by FIBBA in April to obtain the “Clean Tourism Destination” certification offered by the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (PROFEPA, by its acronym in Spanish). One program allows for measurements, the other sets standards according to domestic regulations. Together they will achieve a well-rounded sustainability that follows the laws of the land.
Nowadays the Nature and Ecotourism sector is one of the fastest growing tourism segments. Obtaining this certificate increases the destination’s positioning within it. In Mexico, the areas of Ixtapa Zihuatanejo, Loreto and Nuevo Vallarta seek to join Huatulco.