Compassion to the Environment
Reducing the negative impacts of tourism on the environment is a full time job, and at socialtours, we have internalised it well, inching year by year towards a lesser and lesser impact on the environment. The easy bit is doing it during the trips actually, but we do not take the easiest path.
Zero Plastic Bag
One of the initiatives we have launched is to reach a zero plastic bag status in the office. While reaching an absolute zero in todays world might be impossible, we make every possible effort to reduce it to very close to zero.
Almost daily, our highly acclaimed COOK like a LOCAL course goes to the market to source ingredients for the course - vegetables, meat, spices, etc. We never carry plastics when we do this, instead relying on locally sources recycled rice bag totes, that we give to the travellers who join to carry, spreading the message one more step further!
Getting off the grid
Since a few years, we invested in solar panels to produce electricity for our office. Since we could not trust the sun either, however, we decided to opt for a 75% solar and 25% grid option, which in Nepal is also clean energy from hydro sources.
Today our electric usage (mostly laptops and printers - our office is very well lit naturally, so does not require electricity) is mainly through solar.
When the power sharing agreements come in, we might even supply the grid with some electricity!
At the office, many of our penholders, dustbins are made from recycled plastic wrappers, and even some office stools are upcycled from cycle forks. Small steps in creating an example of what can be used.
We have also since many years done our own semi-full cycle in paper recycling. We already use very less paper, but what is waste is then given to a recycling firm and it comes back as visiting cards and our marketing materials.
Like we said earlier, keep the trails clean and not littering during a trip is the easy bit!