Winner - Big Cat Green Island Cruises
Big Cat Green Island Reef Cruises is a leading reef ecotourism operator operating to Green Island within the Cairns section of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and Marine Park. The company recognizes environmental management as one of its highest corporate responsibilities and is committed to being environmentally responsible, promoting environmental best practices, maximising sustainability and being a responsible member of the local community.
Big Cat Green Island Reef Cruises offers high quality, comfortable catamaran transport to over 120,000 domestic and international tourists annually to Green Island - an idyllic coral cay on Australia's Great Barrier Reef. BCGIRC fleet includes eight coaches, two catamarans, two glass bottom boats and two semisubmersible vessels.
Big Cat Green Island Reef Cruises main goal throughout 2008 was to adopt a differentiated position in the market place by becoming the only large reef operator to obtain a zero carbon footprint by implementing sustainable practices. They have taken a very proactive position on the issue climate action by attaining a zero carbon footprint, because it is viewed as a very serious threat to the reef environment in which they operate.
Highly Commended - Crystal Creek Meadows
Crystal Creek Meadows is four fully self contained luxury cottages and residence scattered across a 16 acre property in Kangaroo Valley, 2 hours south of Sydney, NSW, owned and operated by, Chris and Sophie Warren, and their lovely children.
They brought a rundown business with two dinghy cabins and set about renovating them and building two new cottages. The land and waterways had been cleared and were running beef cattle, and almost none of the original habitat remained. They embraced the opportunity to learn all they could about their environment and started on a very steep learning curve - they educated themselves on water conservation, energy efficiency, flora and fauna conversation and social responsibility.
In February 2009, they won the Australian Tourism Award - Hosted Accommodation, achieved Climate Action Accreditation, rose to AAA 5 stars, were recognised twice by Shoalhaven City Council for community contribution, and recognised by the Department of Environment and Climate Change in its Green Globe Environmental Sustainability Awards June 2009.