Travel – whether it be commuting to work or going on holiday – is a key sector to get right when it comes to sustainability. It can be difficult to make good decisions. For example, it’s not just that road transport produces 30-50% of all airborne particulate pollution, but the electronic systems in many cars also contain conflict minerals. These are raw materials mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo where profits are used to fund war and conflict in Africa. Overseas tourism is not just contributing to enormous carbon emissions from flights but in some cases are also overburdening already fragile eco-systems with associated problems such as litter.
Even when done with the best of intentions, such as volunteering, there can be hidden problems such as recent reports that some schemes involving orphanages have been implicated in child trafficking.
However, the commercial rise of electric transport powered by renewable energy along with more travel companies offering sustainable and ethical holiday alternatives is helping to broaden the sustainable options available.
REAL is a community interest company that aims to support citizens and organisational leaders to transition to carbon zero and sustainability, founded by Safia Minney & friends.