Year of Climate Innovation

Tomorrow’s Air, Innovation Norway and the Adventure Travel Trade Association announce a year of climate innovation in 2024, proudly kicking off a yearlong series of dynamic networking and educational events focused on climate innovation, culminating in an exclusive executive event in Norway: Innovate for Tomorrow Climate Action Summit. 

While a 55% reduction in global emissions by 2030 is necessary to stay on track for 1.5 degrees of warming, current national commitments would reduce emissions only about seven percent by 2030. To make up for this shortfall, policymakers and business leaders in all sectors will need to embrace innovation in many forms - from innovative new technologies to new business models. Executives working in travel will find the new partnership between Tomorrow’s Air, Innovation Norway and the Adventure Travel Trade Association a supportive asset. The partners are inviting leaders from across the tourism, transport, energy, climate tech, finance and media landscape to join in a series of intimate educational and networking gatherings throughout 2024, culminating in a three-day Climate Action Summit in Norway. The gatherings are designed to inspire, educate and foster the relationships necessary for the scale up of innovations needed to support deep transformation. 

The first in the series took place 31 January at the Norwegian Consul General’s residence in San Francisco, California. A select group of fifty gathered to gain perspective during a keynote presentation from Fred Reid, the Global Head of Business Development of regional airline and electric flight leader SurfAir. Reid’s comments were followed by a panel discussion featuring analysis from Susan Su of Toba Capital, Daniel Anger of McKinsey and Company alongside the practical experience of Carly Biggart of Hurtigruten and Matt Berna of Intrepid Travel. 

"Partnering with Innovation Norway and the Adventure Travel Trade Association is a game-changing move for us at Tomorrow’s Air. Together, we are at the forefront of a transformative journey in the travel industry," stated Christina Beckmann, Head of Tomorrow's Air. "This collaboration is not just about discussing climate change; it's about actively shaping the future of travel through innovative solutions and sustainable practices. Our goal is to turn ideas into action, fostering a community of leaders and innovators who are committed to making a real impact on the planet. We believe that through this partnership, we can catalyze significant advancements in reducing carbon emissions and promoting sustainable tourism, setting a new standard for how the travel industry operates in harmony with our environment."

According to the OECD Financing Climate Futures report, innovation is a key ingredient in addressing climate change: it lays the foundation for new businesses and jobs that help increase global productivity, which in turn delivers benefits that help society advance key UN Sustainable Development Goals such as eliminating poverty, improving health and well-being and access to education. As the report observes, “to increase the likelihood and reduce the cost of achieving and adapting to the 1.5°C or 2°C goals, the world must accelerate the deployment of existing innovations in technology, business models and services, and swiftly move the next generation of climate solutions from the lab to the market.”

This strategic partnership between Tomorrow’s Air, Innovation Norway, and the Adventure Travel Trade Association represents a collaborative effort to address one of the most pressing issues of our time: climate change. Innovation Norway, with its expertise in fostering innovation and sustainable development, is a natural ally in this initiative. The organization's commitment to environmental sustainability aligns perfectly with the goals of the year of climate innovation. 

Hege Barnes, Managing Director for Innovation Norway in the USA, states, “The 'Year of Climate Innovation' and the 'Innovate for Tomorrow Climate Summit' reflect Norway’s proactive commitment to climate action. The Norwegian government has launched an aggressive initiative to speed up Norway’s green transition with an objective to cut our climate emissions in half by 2030. The focus will be on increasing value creation across green industries, giving priority to, and securing profitable and sustainable growth for companies developing innovative products and solutions that help us achieve our overall climate goals. Our UNESCO World Heritage Fjords are seeking to be emission free by 2026, and Oslo, Norway’s capital, aims to offer an all-electric public transport system and become the world’s first wholly-emission free city by 2030. 

Shannon Stowell, Adventure Travel Trade Association CEO reflected on the organization’s long history at the forefront of sustainability and innovation in travel, “We started publishing content and inviting speakers regarding climate at our 2007 Summit in Whistler, Canada. Fast forward to today where we’ve built climate action into the ATTA’s ecosystem through Tomorrow’s Air and other actions regarding our own carbon reduction. It’s only natural that it is time to convene an event with other travel professionals and cross sector executives to try and spark industry-wide shifts toward a more responsible industry.”

By joining forces, these organizations aim to leverage their collective resources, networks, and knowledge to accelerate the adoption of innovative climate solutions within the travel industry. The partnership is seen as a crucial step in bridging the gap between current emission reduction efforts and the ambitious targets necessary to mitigate the effects of climate change. Through educational events, networking opportunities, and the culminating Climate Action Summit, this collaboration seeks to inspire and empower travel industry leaders to embrace and implement groundbreaking strategies and technologies that will drive meaningful environmental change and sustainable business practices.

Executives interested in learning more about the event are invited to register their interest to participate here.

Uniting and empowering travelers.

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