Names define our identity. As a nonprofit organization, our name is especially important in communicating who we are and what we do. And as we grow and evolve as an organization, our name must follow suite.
We are therefore rebranding as the Sustainable Tourism Association of Hawai’i (from Hawai’i Ecotourism Association). By replacing “ecotourism” with “sustainable tourism,” our new name more closely aligns with our mission to protect Hawaii’s unique, natural environment and host culture through the promotion of responsible travel and educational programs, relating to sustainable tourism for residents, businesses and visitors.
Over the past two decades, global tourism has undergone significant growth and changes, including an exponential increase in the number of travelers and travel destinations. This worldwide expansion of tourism has resulted in opportunities and challenges that have given rise to the concept of “sustainable tourism.”
Compared to ecotourism, sustainable tourism is more holistic. Whereas ecotourism is limited to nature-based tours and/or natural resources conservation, sustainable tourism employs the triple bottom line: people, planet, profit. It considers communities and cultural conservation (people), environmental conservation (planet), and economic development (profit).
We believe that replacing “ecotourism” with “sustainable tourism” better reflects our mission of supporting a local tourism industry that benefits the environment, host community, Hawaiian culture, and economy of Hawaii.