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Eagle Wing Tours Leads the Way for Responsible Eco-Tourism

October 26, 2013 Responsible Tourism No Comments Email Email

Victoria-owned Eagle Wing Tours has redefined what a model whale watching company should be, both on and off the water. With environmental stewardship at the core of their values, they provide guests with a thrilling adventure that also educates, motivates and inspires.

“Spotting that whale is the cherry on top of an already very comprehensive marine experience,” said Brett Soberg, co-owner and captain of Eagle Wing Tours. “What we can do to protect these species by supporting education, conservation and responsible business is where we really count.”

Humpback Whale breaching with Eagle Wing Tours boatAs stewards of the Salish Sea, Eagle Wing Tours actively works to protect the marine ecosystem for generations to come. They are Canada’s first 100%carbon-neutral whale watching company—they reduce what they can and offset what they can’t—and as a member of 1% for the Planet, they donate a minimum of 1% of all total sales to local environmental nonprofit projects. They also contribute to ongoing research projects such as orca adoption, photo identification, diving behaviour and movement patterns, and support local educational programs by inspiring the next generation of Salish Sea ambassadors.

In their daily operations, Eagle Wing Tours continues to support the local ecology and economy through sustainable initiatives. They use 100% recycled, post-consumer paper; purchase locally-produced biodegradable and non-toxic cleaning products; and recycle and compost in their floating office, producing very little trash. On the water, guests enjoy fun and educational tours aboard boats equipped with diesel and 4-stroke gasoline engines that are quiet and do not burn any oil (all used engine oil is recycled).

As a testament to Soberg’s commitment to the environment, he was recently recognized with two environmental stewardship awards. On September 24, 2013, Soberg won the Community Environmental Leader category at theCapital Region District Ecostar Awards, which honours the work of an individual who has continually gone the extra mile to help steward our environment and engage in conservation. And on September 25, 2013, Eagle Wing Tours received the Tourism Sustainability Award from Tourism Vancouver Island, which recognizes a tourism business in the Vancouver Island Region that has set out to minimize their environmental impact, conserve natural resources, respect local cultures and benefit local communities.

“Eagle Wing is not your typical whale watching company,” said Jill Doucette, founder of Synergy Sustainability Consultants. “What they have done to support our local community and ecology is far beyond what I have seen in this sector. They are truly leading change through their passion and commitment to the environment.“

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