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World Environment Day was designated in 1974 by the United Nations with the aim of improving and encouraging information for individuals, companies and communities to promote a sense of responsibility, care and conservation of the environment. This day is now an annual reminder of the actions we need to take and the pollution rates we need to try to lower. Every year the theme changes and this one was dedicated to Air Pollution.

Air pollution is a problem that affects millions of people around the world, China, the organizer of this year, I invite society in general to become aware of the damage caused by such pollution and the actions we can take to reduce rates and thus reduce global warming and stop all harmful effects to our health and the environment.

According to the WHO, 9 out of every 10 people in the world breathe air with a certain level of pollutants, it is estimated that around 7 million people die each year due to exposure to these pollutants. The polluted air contains particles that enter our body to reach our respiratory and cardiovascular system causing cerebrovascular diseases, different types of cancer and of course respiratory infections that are usually the most common such as pneumonia.

That is why in AXA we want to talk a bit about Ecotourism, a trend of sustainable travel that arises around the 80´s in which we will be more concerned about conserving and protecting the natural resources of the place we want to visit, as well as promote the economy, culture and growth of the community that receives us feel the contact and appreciation of nature the main objective of our trip.

When we do ecotourism we are normally offered sporting activities such as kayaking, hiking, surfing, cycling, scuba diving, zip-line all these with that common factor that distinguishes this type of tourism, observe, appreciate and value nature living within the ecosystem without damaging it.

One of the important factors is to check that the place that offers us this type of services really has a certificate that guarantees these ecotourism practices, such as ISO 14001, here in America the Rain Forest Alliance or in Europe the European Charter of Sustainable Tourism (CETS).

Each region can vary, but you can investigate a little depending on what activity you want to do and the destination of your adventure. Some of the main countries that now develop ecotourism are Costa Rica, Mexico, New Caledonia, Slovenia, Namibia, Ecuador, among others.

How can you be a good ecotourist?

  • As always research is paramount so as we explained, check well what activities you want to do and if they are certified. Look for timetables, prices and above all guides that will allow you to enjoy your adventure to the maximum.
  • Always listen, learn, follow the instructions and use the appropriate equipment to perform the activities, this way you will get the most out of the activities without putting yourself or the environment you visit at risk.
  • At all times respect both the flora and fauna that surrounds you, do not try to take or alter in any way nature.
  • As far as possible use sustainable or more sustainable means of transport than the traditional ones, use bicycles, skates, walk or use public transport.
  • Consume in local businesses to help the economy of the population you visit, whether in food, handicrafts, souvenirs, tourism companies or means of transport.
  • If it is possible for you to get involved in the initiatives or organizations of that place that help to conserve natural spaces, in this way you will be contributing to their conservation and good condition.

You have to be very careful with this type of travel because as in everything many people just try to take advantage without really caring for nature, polluting, invading ecosystems, degrading natural areas, affecting wildlife, promoting climate change and also deforming and invading the local cultures of those places.

The goal of your trip must always be to find a balance between tourism and respect for the environment.

Take into account the above points, enjoy the natural attractions, value both the natural and cultural environment, leave your comfort zone and dare to adventure experiencing new things, the most important thing is that you live the experience and live to the maximum always, of course, packing your travel assistance and benefits of adventure sports with the company that has the largest medical network in the world.

Theresa D. Maciel