German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)


Sustainable tourism offer

Sustainable tourism offer

Path through moor landscape Murnauer Moos, Alpine foreland (© Barbara Engels)

Nature experience offerings are highly popular: 79 percent of German holidaymakers cite ‘experiencing nature’ as ‘very important’ or ‘important’ as a reason for their choice of destination. Increasing numbers of regions actively market nature experience opportunities. By rigorously aligning tourism products and their marketing to the needs and wishes of holidaymakers, the potential of nature experience opportunities can be better exploited for sustainable tourism. To this end, greater consideration needs to be given to sustainability aspects in product development.The NBS sets a target, for example, under which ten per cent of tourism providers are to meet environmental criteria by 2020. A precondition for the attainment of such targets is the specification of criteria for the various tourism segments. To this end, BfN funds projects for the integration of biodiversity into tourism.

Together with N.I.T. and WWF Germany, BfN cooperates with various selected tourism operators. The objective is to work in dialogue with operators to develop ways of integrating biodiversity into their activities. Various initial outcomes have already been attained (German-language publication).

 In another project with the support of ECOTRANS, approaches are being developed for the integration of biodiversity into CSR processes in tourism. A baseline study and recommendations for criteria for the integration of biodiversity into standards, labels and awards are available in English.


Integration of biodiversity in Corporate Social Responsibility

Logo Tour-Cert

Tourism industry can make a huge contribution to the protection of biodiversity when integrating biodiversity into their management processes. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) processes offer an instrument to realize this. BfN is therefore funding a Research project to enhance the integration of biodiversity aspects in CSR processes. The supplier of labels, standards, awards and competitions for sustainable tourism are the direct contact in this project. Their target groups include the major sectors of the tourism industry: tour operators, travel agencies, hotels and camping sites, catering and destination management organizations. The project activities include: 

  • Development and dissemination of a practical guide (checklist biodiversity) for the different sectors within the tourism industry
  • Integration of effective criteria for the conservation of biodiversity in at least two CSR processes (standards, labels)
  • Preparation of examples of successful integration of biodiversity in the management system as well as in the CSR reporting
  • Setting up a nationwide (Germany) pool of knowledge on DestiNet with contacts, background information, examples, ideal businesses and destinations, practical tools, etc. for the tourism industry beyond the project period through examining how well biodiversity measures have been integrated into awards and standards.


Integration of biodiversity into CSR processes in tourism - Baseline Study

Report of the International Workshop: "Presentation of Viabono for Central and Eastern Europe"  BfN-Skripten 132 (1,2 MB)

Last Change: 15/01/2020