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State to sponsor green tourism workshops

The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development and Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation are partnering to sponsor five green certification workshops across the state, starting next week. The workshops are part of Tennessee's Sustainable Tourism initiative.

The workshops will facilitate discussions and solicit partner input regarding the development of a state green certification program for the tour and travel industry. In addition, the events will provide continued sustainable tourism resources, case studies, best practices and access to leading experts, according to a press release.

The first workshop will be held July 21 at Hilton Garden Inn in Gatlinburg
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"From the beginning, partner input has been essential in shaping Tennessee's Sustainable Tourism program," said Commissioner Susan Whitaker, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development. "The five 2010 workshops exists as public forums to receive input from industry partners and create a green certification program that continues to position Tennessee as a leader in the nation's Sustainable Tourism movement."

TDTD and TDEC jointly applied for and received a United States Environmental Protection Agency Pollution Prevention Source Reduction Grant, which will fund the green certification workshops and further research and development of a sustainable state-level green certification program for Tennessee's tour and travel industry.

The state has a nationally recognized, award-winning green certification program to utilize as a model in the Chattanooga Green Lodging Program, which has already been adopted by the Tennessee Hospitality Association

The dates and proposed locations for the other workshops are Aug. 19 at The Hutton Hotel in Nashville, Sept. 14 at Casey Jones Village in Jackson, Sept. 15 at a location that is still to be determined in Memphis and Oct. 13 at Knoxville Convention Center in Knoxville.

To attend a workshop , RSVP to Patricia Gray at or (615) 741-9004.

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