Biodiversity and Our Lives: Celebrate the International Year of Biodiversity at the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference

Biodiversity and Our Lives: Celebrate the International Year of Biodiversity at the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference

Special Workshops, Indigenous Tourism and Biodiversity Website Award Ceremony To Be Hosted at This Year’s ESTC, Portland, Oregon USA, Sept 8-10.


IYBWASHINGTON, July 20, 2010 – The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) is pleased to collaborate with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to host the following three events during the upcoming Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (ESTC): Global Perspective Workshop "Biodiversity and Our Lives" on Wednesday, September 8th; Award Ceremony for the 2010 Indigenous Tourism and Biodiversity Website (ITBW) Award on Friday, September 10th, and ITBW Web 2.0 Workshop on Saturday, September 11th.


Global Perspective Workshop: Biodiversity and Our Lives will be held on Wednesday, September 8th, 2010, from 12:30-2:00pm at Hilton Portland (Galleria South). Highlighting various global initiatives around the International Year of Biodiversity and the roles of biodiversity in our lives, this workshop will feature key examples of wildlife conservation, environmental education and awareness-raising efforts relevant to travelers and the tourism industry alike. This workshop is free and open to the public.


The workshop will feature the following expert presenters:


Oliver Hillel is Programme Officer for theSecretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), an international treaty (entered into force in December 1993) to sustain the rich diversity of life on Earth. Prior to joining the Secretariat, Oliver Hillel was Project Team Leader in Palawan, the Philippines, producing a provincial master plan for sustainable tourism development and building capacity of local governments and businesses.


Jenny Gray is the Chief Executive Officer of Zoos Victoria which operates three zoos in Melbourne, Australia. Zoos Victoria has embarked on an ambitious, new strategic direction, - to transform into a conservation organization. Zoos Victoria is committed to ensuring that every undertaking will bring about net conservation gain: through working with animals (both in captivity and in the wild), and empowering visitors and communities to take actions that will assist wildlife.


Dr. Wallace J. Nichols is Co-Founder of SEE Turtles, and has been a leading ocean conservationist for over 15 years. He is a Research Associate at the California Academy of Sciences, Former President of the International Sea Turtle Society, and Eastern Pacific Co-Chair for the IUCN’s Marine Turtle Specialists Group. He co- founded Ocean Revolution and WiLDCOAST, two international advocacy groups.


The Indigenous Tourism and Biodiversity Website Award (ITBW) is a collaborative effort between CBD and, with the support of the Heidehof Foundation. The competition highlights the contributions of Indigenous operators to biological and cultural diversity, and recognizes best practice examples of innovative use of online communication tools and web technologies. Applicants from 10 countries around the world (Australia, Bolivia, Canada, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Mexico, Micronesia, New Zealand, Pakistan and Sweden) entered the 2010 ITBW Award, and the following operators have been selected as this year's winners.


Nutti Sami Siida (Winner, 2010 ITBW Award) features reindeer sled trips and excellent nature and culture tours in Sweden. Owners Nils Torbjörn Nutti and Carina Pingi are both Sami from Gabna Sameby and work with experienced and knowledgeable guides who ensure the quality. TIME Unlimited Tours (Winner, 2010 ITBW Popular Vote Award) from New Zealand, operated by the Maori-European couple Ceillhe Tewhare Teneti Hema Sperath and Néill Sperath, provides personalised and interactive Auckland and Maori Indigenous Cultural Tours.


TIES is pleased to welcome Neill and Ceillhe Sperath of TIME Unlimited Tours and Nils Torbjörn Nutti, Carina Pingi of Nutti Sami Siida, and Joe Doherty of Te Urewera Treks (Finalist, 2010 ITBW Award), who will be joining the ESTC in September, and attending the ITBW award ceremony to be held during the Closing Reception on Friday, September 10, 2010. The ITBW delegates will also be joining the ITBW Web 2.0 Workshop, which allows participants to get a hands-on experience of Web 2.0 channels for immediate and inexpensive communication, including genuine conversations and guerrilla marketing.


Registration for the ESTC 2010 is available at:


About TIES

As the world's oldest and largest international ecotourism association, TIES seeks to be the global source of knowledge and advocacy uniting communities, conservation, sustainable travel..




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The Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference will highlight global challenges and local opportunities, supporting sustainable development of tourism and promoting solutions that balance conservation, communities and sustainable travel.

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