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Copenhagen Rewards Eco-Friendly Tourists with Free Coffee and Cultural Experiences

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Copenhagen's CopenPay initiative rewards tourists for eco-friendly actions with free coffee, cultural experiences, and more. Running from July 15 to August 21, the pilot project aims to reduce tourism-related pollution.

Copenhagen has launched an innovative initiative called CopenPay to tackle the pollution problem linked to tourism. Running from July 15 to August 21, this pilot project aims to reward tourists for engaging in environmentally friendly activities such as cycling, using public transport, collecting waste, or working in urban gardens. The rewards range from free coffee to kayak rentals and cultural experiences.

The initiative is based on a trust system where tourists can show proof of their good deeds, such as a train ticket or a bicycle, to receive rewards. According to Rikke Holm Petersen, communications manager of the Copenhagen tourist office, the project is a 'small step towards a green transition.' If successful, CopenPay could be extended until the end of the year.

Wonderful Copenhagen, the tourism authority, emphasizes that CopenPay aims to transform ecological actions into currency for cultural experiences. For instance, bringing plastic waste to the National Gallery of Denmark grants access to a workshop where it can be turned into art. Similarly, cycling or taking public transport to the city's thermal power station allows visitors to ski on an artificial track on the building's roof.

Copenhagen is renowned for its safe, clean, and green environment, making it an ideal place for cycling with 382 kilometers of bike lanes. The city aims to reduce the environmental burden of tourism by encouraging eco-friendly practices. Mikkel Aarø Hansen, CEO of Wonderful Copenhagen, stated, 'With CopenPay, we give people the chance to enjoy more of what Copenhagen has to offer while reducing the burden it places on our planet.'

The launch of CopenPay comes at a time of growing concern about the environmental and social impact of tourism, which has led to protests in various cities like Barcelona, the Canary Islands, and Mallorca. Hansen added, 'We must ensure that tourism stops being an environmental burden and becomes a force for positive change. An important step in this transformation is changing how we move around the destination, what we consume, and how we interact with the locals.'

  • The CopenPay initiative is part of Copenhagen's broader efforts to promote sustainable tourism and reduce its carbon footprint. The city has already made significant strides in this area, with 62% of its citizens using bicycles as their primary mode of transportation.
  • The initiative also highlights the importance of community involvement in achieving environmental goals. By encouraging tourists to participate in activities like urban gardening and waste collection, CopenPay fosters a sense of responsibility and connection to the local environment.
  • If the pilot project proves successful, it could serve as a model for other cities facing similar challenges. The hope is that tourists will leave Copenhagen with a more environmentally conscious mindset, inspiring them to adopt similar practices in their own communities.
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Refs: | CNNEE | Le Figaro |