VTIC’s latest Quarterly Forum provided members with a key opportunity to learn about the legislative requirements of the pending carbon tax, as well as the steps they can take to boost the energy efficiency of their operations. Guests heard from three engaging speakers – Carbon Market Institute CEO Mike Tournier, Michael Lambden of VECCI Sustainability Services and UK sustainability strategist Emma Whittlesea.
The Forum, themed ‘The carbon tax, sustainability and your business’, was held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre on 14 May and supported by Destination Melbourne, Tourism Victoria, MCEC and the City of Melbourne. Ms Whittlesea, a researcher with the University of Plymouth/ISSR, was in Melbourne as a guest of Tourism Victoria and we were fortunate she could address the Forum about the inter-relationships between tourism and climate change. She shared the experiences of South-West Tourism in the United Kingdom, where sustainability and the adoption of carbon reduction requirements have become a core part of the region’s tourism strategy. To learn more about Ms Whittlesea’s projects, click here.
Mr Tournier delivered an informative and concise overview of the so-called ‘carbon tax’ and its implementation, emphasizing that it is “not a tax, but rather an Emissions Trading Scheme with a fixed price period”. He also provided information on the Government’s ‘Clean Energy Future’ assistance packages. Mr Lambden showcased case studies of Victorian operators and highlighted the relatively simple first steps that can be taken towards business sustainability.
The clear message from the Forum was that businesses will need to adapt to the new legislative requirements and be prepared for the effects these will have on their direct costs, supply chains and consumer spending patterns, and that ultimately, doing so is a smart business decision. When faced with tough economic conditions, increasing legislative obligations and environmental change, it is the fittest and most nimble businesses that will survive and prosper.
To view the presentations from the Forum and for links to related websites, please click here.