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Attractions’ analysis reveals high ranking of Sydney Opera House for sustainability commitment

Attractions’ analysis reveals high ranking of Sydney Opera House for sustainability commitment
October 6, 2020

The energy team at Uswitch (a UK-based energy price comparison service) have analysed 27 of the world’s most visited tourist attractions and scored their commitment to sustainability, based on low emissions, water reduction, recycling schemes, re-wilding efforts, renewable energy and sustainable transport, with the Sydney Opera House ranked in second place receiving a score of 50 out of the possible 60 .

The analysis of the eco-friendly credentials of each attraction revealed the best and worst tourist attractions for sustainability globally.

Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World located in Florida topped the list as the most eco-friendly tourist attraction. With over 17.5 million annual visitors it’s the most visited amusement park in the world, but despite the area containing many rides and amusements, the park has made the largest conscious effort to decrease the impact it has on the environment. Almost a third of the 40-square-mile park is dedicated to wildlife and conservation.

Sydney’s Opera House ranked in second place with a score of 50 out of the possible 60 - the Opera House has been awarded a 5 star Green Star performance rating from the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA), becoming one of the first World Heritage-listed buildings globally to achieve the certification.

In 2017, the organisation installed a series of modular artificial reefs alongside the Opera House sea wall, aiming to explore new ways to increase marine biodiversity and support native species in Sydney Harbour. 85% of the Opera House’s yearly energy consumption is supplied from NSW wind and solar power.

Notwithstanding the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, climate change continues to be a global concern and is becoming increasingly more difficult to ignore the impact that tourism has on the environment. Tourists have begun to question: Which tourist attractions from around the world are making the biggest effort to ‘go green’?

Attractions are making a conscious effort globally to become more environmentally friendly, to help tackle climate change and reduce their carbon footprint.

In their report, Uswitch question the impact of tourist attractions on the planet, highlighting that “when we visit tourist attractions, we often only consider the benefits for us. The relaxation, the memories and the experiences. But what impact do they have on our planet? The negative environmental impacts of tourism are substantial – this includes the decline of natural resources as well as the increase in pollution and waste. By 2030, we are predicted to see a 25% increase in CO2 emissions (from 1,597 million tons to 1,998) from the tourist industry alone."

The Uswitch report reflects on the energy consumption of a single rollercoaster, with flashing lights and speeding carts.as well as the volume of water needed to generate a log flume and the disposal of waste and the transport for visitors.

Top 10 Most Eco-Friendly Tourist Attractions Worldwide: 

1.            Disney World Magic Kingdom - 56/60

2.            Sydney Opera House - 50

3.            Niagara Falls - 46

4.            Disney Hong Kong - 45.5

5.            Natural History Museum - 44

6.            Eiffel Tower - 42.5

7.            Disney Land Paris - 42

8.            Universal Studios Orlando - 41.5

9.            Universal Studios Hollywood - 41

10.          Efteling Theme Park - 39

To access the Uswitch analysis click here

Image: VIVID Austral Floral Ballet on the Sydney Opera House sails. Credit:TDC Technical Direction Company

Related Articles

18th July 2019 - Flow Power supports Sydney Opera House’s long-term renewable energy goals

4th October 2018 - Sydney Opera House achieves carbon neutral goal

7th September 2015 - Sydney Opera House awarded for sustainability leadership

5th November 2014 - New LED lighting illuminates Sydney Opera House Concert Hall

27th August 2020 - New Zealand tourism industry redoubles sustainability efforts

30th January 2020 - Research by Tourism Industry Aotearoa highlights progress in meeting sustainability goals

9th December 2019 - New Zealand tourism businesses see sustainability as top priority

14th June 2019 - Tourism Australia partners with EEAA to support sustainability initiative

28th February 2019 - EVANZ backs Tourism Sustainability Commitment

30th December 2018 - Australian sustainability knowledge positively impacts global tourism

15th December 2018 - ICC Sydney exceeds sustainability targets

19th July 2018 - MCG leads in industry recycling and sustainability initiatives

25th November 2017 - MCG’s sustainability initiatives recognised at National Energy Efficiency Awards

23rd November 2017 - Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria rewarded for sustainability

14th November 2017 - New Zealand tourism industry aims for sustainability

21st October 2017 - WTTC calls on tourism to embrace sustainability reporting


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