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Cartagena de Indias has been awarded the Ibero-American Prize for Best Smart Tourist Destination in the sustainability category.

In a prominent ceremony held in Curitiba, Brazil, on Sunday, March 17th, Cartagena de Indias was honored with the prestigious Ibero-American Prize for Best Smart Tourist Destination in the environmental sustainability category. This recognition, granted by the Ibero-American Network of Smart Tourist Destinations, highlights the city’s efforts in implementing an innovative Circular Tourism pilot plan focused on environmental preservation.

Cartagena, the best smart tourist destination in America

The pilot plan, carried out in the heart of the Historic Center, has been widely praised for its innovative approach to waste management, through awareness campaigns and selective collection practices to minimize environmental impact in the tourism sector. During the project, over 110 tons of recyclable material were recovered, with 52.7% being glass and 22.5% PET, thus generating economic revitalization and contributing to the dignification of local recyclers.

Significance of the recognition

This award not only praises Cartagena de Indias’ commitment to environmental protection but also positions it as an exemplary tourist destination, appealing to conscious travelers seeking experiences that respect and promote environmental preservation. With projects like Circular Tourism, Cartagena continues to lead the way towards a more sustainable future in the tourism industry.

Relevant details

The data revealed about solid waste management in Cartagena de Indias underscores the importance of this project. With approximately 750 tons of solid waste generated daily, the Historic Center represents a significant portion of this volume. According to the District’s Solid Waste Environmental Management Plan, over 96% of these wastes are highly recyclable, including organics susceptible to recycling through processes such as composting and vermicomposting.

Context and collaboration

The project has been made possible thanks to an unprecedented public-private partnership, involving key stakeholders from both the tourism sector and the governmental and business spheres. This multifaceted collaboration has not only effectively addressed the issue of solid waste in the Historic Center but also promoted a culture of responsible and sustainable tourism in the region.

Outcome and projection

The success of the pilot is not only reflected in the amount of material recovered but also in the positive impact it has had on the local economy and the quality of life of Cartagena’s inhabitants. This international recognition reinforces the city’s commitment to sustainable development and environmental preservation, setting a precedent for other regions seeking to follow its example in promoting more responsible and environmentally respectful tourism.