wood and trees

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Time to write again!
I last wrote a blog post on foot of a need to rant about something, cathartic as that was it’s not a good basis for blogging. I had intended to use the process of Ecotourism training and certification as a subject to ponder upon but the process did not lend its self to organised groups of thoughts. I made my way through the process, moving from point to point but not seeing the wood for trees so to speak. The start wound into the various strands with the coming and going of people and ideas, wafting like smoke through my consciousness, leaving traces and connections with past interests and activities. Now, after the training and the certification process I find myself again asking more questions than I have answers for.
Is Ecotourism a product? Or is it an ethos or a philosophy? Is it what you are, or what you do? Or simply how you do it?
Is it possible to be a totally non eco-friendly person, but jump through the hoops and tick boxes and be declared Eco? Unfortunately, on a purely administrative level yes, it is. If anyone has the policies in place for a business, purchases in an eco-friendly way and puts the various requirements in place then they are an Eco friendly business. This is good and bad, it will bring non eco people into a way of doing things in a manner that is good for the environment, making a positive contribution. But, is the commitment there? What happens when a decision is being made where there are options, i.e.;
The best possible option for an eco-friendly approach, but expensive.
An OK option for eco-friendly and not too expensive.
Just about eco-friendly and the cheapest.
What can we expect from an enterprise which is working on the basis that being passed is as much as is needed, where it’s the ticking of a box and not the principle of the decision which is most important? Yes, the genuine article will shine through but there will probably be problems which will reflect badly on the industry, we can only hope that the true nature of genuine operators can carry the development despite the tickers. It’s to be hoped that the people who get involved for simple commercial reasons will, with time and through interacting with the more committed operators develop into a more truly green business operator, that they will adapt to a genuine ethos of doing things in as Eco friendly as possible because it’s the right way to do it and not just because it’s a requirement.
So, of course the assessment process, the certification and the training are just the start of being an eco-friendly business. What happens in the business and around it is what really matters. Being certified is an external reflection of what is within and it’s what is within that really matters. In a sense it’s not the wood that is seen that matters, it is the individual trees and the other plants and creatures that also thrive in the wood which are important. The variety and diversity is what gives the wood it’s value, the magic of not knowing what will be seen next, the mystery of the interactions. The certification is what is seen from afar, it’s when the wood is entered that the difference between a monoculture of Sitka spruce and the wonder of the variety in a natural native wood of mixed species is seen. Both are a wood, a grouping of trees, but in the end, it’s the quality that counts. So, let’s not be too worried about seeing the wood, we need to be seeing the trees and everything else that’s is in there.1092

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~ by stonehuts on December 11, 2012.

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