Sustainable Galapagos tours aboard Yacht Isabela II

Sustainable Galapagos tours aboard Yacht Isabela II

Sustainability: Why is it important?

The world is changing, and so is the climate. This is why it is more important than ever that we take meaningful steps toward preserving and improving the health of our planet through sustainable travel, environmental consciousness, and caring for the Earth in ways that promote and preserve the beauty and integrity of its magnificent flora and fauna. By going above and beyond Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle, we can provide enriching experiences that satisfy our very human curiosity and need for discovering and experiencing new places, while being kind to the Earth and eliminating our impact on the very destinations we visit. How do we achieve sustainable tourism in the Galapagos with Yacht Isabela II? We implement several measures to improve our efficiency and make our operations as low-impact as possible. Our onboard water treatment plant is an example of this. We also provide our explorers with the means to join us in offsetting our collective carbon footprint.

Climate Change: What is it? How is it caused? What can be done about it?

Greenhouse Gases and the Greenhouse Effect

Humans rely on energy for all sorts of things, including travel. Most commonly, these activities require fossil fuels that emit numerous greenhouse gasses, of which the most prominent is carbon dioxide (CO2). Greenhouse gasses affect the way our atmosphere filters different types of solar radiation. Infrared radiation is most peculiar in that it makes its way through the atmosphere but is then reflected back out into space.

Excess greenhouse gasses trap infrared rays
above the Earth and send them back down to the planet’s surface. This radiation warms our oceans and creates the greenhouse effect that results in climate change.

What can we do about it?

To mitigate the effects of climate change and begin reversing some of the damage that has been caused, we have to look at forests as a major asset, especially when it comes to preventing excess gasses from accumulating in the atmosphere. Trees naturally process CO2 and transform it into oxygen. Large swaths of forest, with plenty of new growth, can capture a fair amount of carbon dioxide. The problem is that humans continue to encroach on vital forest lands for reasons related to agriculture, urban development, logging, and other activities. When this happens, ecosystems are gravely affected, more greenhouse gasses escape into the atmosphere, and important species become endangered or extinct. These things are often impossible to reverse.

Reducing our Carbon Footprint

This is where our Carbon Neutral initiative comes into play. Our parent company, Metropolitan Touring, has been working with several non-profit organizations to develop an offsetting product for our travelers. By accurately measuring the amount of CO2 generated by each of our guests’ travels in Ecuador and assigning a value equivalent to what it costs to plant, nurture, and expand enough forests to offset their carbon footprint, we can offer our explorers the satisfaction of knowing that they’ve done their part to help the environment and to mitigate the effects of climate change.

Carbon Neutral Travel

The organizations with which we partner in this endeavor have been preserving, expanding, and caring for forests in a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve that is crucial to the region –the Andean Chocó. In particular, the groups’ collective efforts are centered on a piece of the Chocó located in the Northwestern sector of Ecuador, about 3 hours north of the capital city of Quito. This stretch of extremely important forests runs from the south of Panama to the north of Peru. The most endangered section of the Chocó is this one, in our own backyard.

CO2 Emission Reduction and Offsetting Examples

In addition to the carbon-neutral travel option afforded to our passengers, Yacht Isabela II has taken important steps to reduce our carbon emissions by investing in our vessel to make it much more fuel-efficient. We do regular maintenance on our engines, calibrating them so as to function optimally at all times. We also coat the hull and bow in a special paint that is environmentally safe and that greatly reduces friction and drag, thereby increasing fuel efficiency.

Calculating Our Explorers’ Carbon Footprint aboard Yacht Isabela II

Below, you’ll find an example of how we calculate the amount of CO2 generated by our guests’ travels in Ecuador. Currently, we handle an offsetting price of US $16 per ton of CO2 emitted. We believe it is just one great way how to travel more sustainably.

Tons of CO2 Emitted Offsetting Price in USD
Quito-Galapagos-Quito (Flight) 0.40 $ 6.40
5-day/4-night Galapagos Expedition Cruise 0.80 $ 12.80
Transfer In/Out 0.07 $ 1.12
Booking and Administrative/Back Office 0.05 $ 0.80
Total Offset Cost per passenger —– USD $21.12

 

Conscious Travel

Make your Galapagos tour memorable by taking care of the most pristine place on Earth!

Enjoy a fully Carbon Neutral travel with Yacht Isabela II.

Start your Galapagos vacations!