Tourism is the economic driver of the Southern Nevada economy, and water is a precious resource in the region. Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) and the local community will celebrate both on Sept. 27 with the marking of World Tourism Day, which is themed, “Tourism and Water: Protecting Our Common Future.”
World Tourism Day was established by the United Nations World Tourism Organization in 1980 to foster awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value.
“We obviously know the value of both tourism and water here in Las Vegas, so it’s particularly poignant for us to join in the honoring of World Tourism Day this year,” said Oscar B. Goodman, chairman, Las Vegas Host Committee. “I’ll be doing my part by celebrating tourism and conserving water by drinking martinis. We are a very water smart community, and we are proud to be participating in this celebration.”
Generating $45 billion in economic impact and supporting nearly half the jobs in the area, totaling approximately 382,000, tourism is the lifeblood of the Southern Nevada economy. Nearly 70 percent of room tax generated by guests staying in Las Vegas resorts goes directly back in to the community, supporting the construction of schools parks and improvement of roads. Approximately $340 million in visitor paid room tax revenue will directly benefit Southern Nevada residents this year. Since 1998, more than $1 billion in room tax has gone toward public education.
Boasting a long history of water conscious efforts, Southern Nevadans concentrate particularly in the hotel community. Many resorts make conservation a key part of their business plan with initiatives such as environmentally friendly and water conscious laundry facilities, policies encouraging guests to conserve water by re-using bedding and towels for more than one day, low flow bathroom fixtures, desert landscaping and using non-potable or recycled water for water features and landscape watering.
“Resorts use only about 3 percent of our water supply, yet our business community is committed to water efficiency,” said Pat Mulroy, general manager of the Southern Nevada Water Authority and the Las Vegas Valley Water District. “Industries participating in the SNWA’s Water Efficient Technologies Program have saved our community more than 1.75 billion gallons of water.
“As part of the Water Conservation Coalition, businesses also have joined together to help retrofit underprivileged communities and aging schools with water-efficient fixtures and landscaping.”
Several natural water attractions are also featured in Southern Nevada including Lake Mead and the Colorado River. The Springs Preserve provides a historical and natural look at water’s role in the area, and will be hosting a special lecture series in honor of World Tourism Day on Sept. 27, featuring several discussions on the importance of water and conservation efforts.
The LVCVA encourages companies to celebrate World Tourism Day on Sept. 27 by using the hashtag #WTD2013 on Twitter and sharing photos of companies’ efforts to conserve water with the UNWTO at www.wtd.unwto.org.
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) is charged with marketing Southern Nevada as a tourism and convention destination worldwide, and also with operating the Las Vegas Convention Center and Cashman Center. With more than 150,000 hotel rooms in Las Vegas alone and 10.6 million square feet of meeting and exhibit space citywide, the LVCVA’s mission centers on attracting ever increasing numbers of leisure and business visitors to the area. For more information, visit www.lvcva.com or www.LasVegas.com.