Looking after Aotearoa New Zealand for future generations means ensuring that tourism, like other sectors, gives back as much as it takes.
For incentives, that means offering solutions across transport, venues and activities to help event organizers reduce their environmental footprint, respect culture, and benefit the host community.
Some examples of work being undertaken include:
New Zealand’s flagship carrier Air New Zealand is committed to net zero carbon emissions by 2050 through SAF fuels, new aircraft technology and carbon removal solutions through its FlyNeutral offsetting program.
Christchurch Airport (direct from San Francisco from December) became climate positive in 2022. A new 400-hectare development beside its runways, Kōwhai Park, is being developed to deliver a range of renewable energies.
New Zealand’s three new convention centers are all designed with environmental sustainability at their heart. One-year-old Te Pae Christchurch’s sustainable initiatives range from a special eWater system to a dehydrator that turns food waste to compost.
Newly opened Tākina in Wellington offers initiatives, from rainwater harvesting to demand controlled air conditioning, to reduce energy and water use.
The New Zealand International Convention Centre (NZICC), set to open in Auckland in 2025, has committed to being a carbon neutral venue and aims to send zero waste to landfill by 2030.
Popular incentive options Queenstown and Wānaka are aiming to become the world’s first zero-carbon tourism destinations by 2030. Innovators in the district are looking at ways to adopt green technology. This includes adrenaline activity Shotover Jet developing a prototype for an electric jet boat, plans to develop a carbon-neutral fuel source for iconic Lake Whakatipu steamship TSS Earnslaw, and developing alternative fuel sources for the buses that travel from Queenstown to the natural beauty of Milford Sound.
A number of New Zealand operators are ensuring the environment they work within is not just protected, but improved, through visitation. The spectacular native forest Rotorua Canopy Tours’ ziplines and swing bridges were located within was overrun by introduced pests. After investing in a 35km trapping network, the thriving forest is now alive with birdsong. Similarly, Wellington’s Zealandia Te Māra a Tāne, the first fully fenced urban ecosanctuary, is not only a place to spot New Zealand’s most extraordinary wildlife, from kiwi to tuatara; it has a 500-year vision to restore the valley’s forest and freshwater ecosystems as closely as possible to pre-human state.