A delegation from the Malaysian Green Building Confederation (MGBC), Sabah Chapter led by its chairman Mok Juang Yu, paid a courtesy call on Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Masidi Manjun, on January 22 to brief him on the Borneo Green Resort Rating Tool.
During the briefing, Mok recalled their courtesy call to Masidi late last year, when the minister lamented shortage of hotels in Sabah, especially hotels that are certified green.
Masidi noted that green hotels and resorts will always fetch higher tourist dollars and complements the state's effort to develop eco-tourism in a big way.
In line with this, Masidi requested MGBC Sabah Chapter to formulate a green resort guideline, which should be practical, effective and affordable, especially for the small resorts.
He was then briefed on the draft Borneo Green Resort Tool, which MGBC had tested on two eco-resorts in the east coast, namely the Balung River Eco Resort and the Sipadan Mangrove Resort.
Both resorts are utilising renewable energy, recycling water and self sustaining in food source and other sustainable practices.
Sim noted that both resorts will achieve gold or higher if they make some improvements that are very cost effective.
Meanwhile, Mok informed Masidi that MGBC will hold a seminar and stakeholder workshop on January 27 at The Pacific Sutera, where four speakers will provide valuable insights on the green rating tools as well as the many case studies of green resorts in Sabah.
Masidi emphasized that Sabah is becoming well known as a world class tourist destination for eco-tourism, and that this image will be greatly enhanced if all the hotels and resorts in the state can be rated green.
The minister also fervently hoped that Sabah's natural assets are well protected and not compromised by the huge influx of tourists. In this regard, he had no hesitation in accepting MGBC's invitation as its guest of honour to officiate at the event on Saturday.
Masidi also directed his ministry to encourage all resorts here to participate in the seminar and stakeholder's workshop, to ensure that the Borneo Green Resort Tool will be accepted and adopted by all resorts.