Amble Resorts: Have you ever had a travel experience that contributed to your will to work towards a sustainable future?
Clarissa Caldwell: I somehow ended up going to Antarctica. It was breathtaking. I hope there are always places where we can see untouched natural beauty, and I hope our grandchildren will see them, too. It hurts to think that the bright blue ice is melting… Nature’s art is at risk.
AR: In your opinion, what impact has social media had on environmental consciousness among travelers? What impact do you think it could have?
CC: Well, social media is a big news-spreader. Spreading good news is good, and a little awareness can go a long way. More importantly: travelers can make a fuss about big companies via social media, and when the Marriott greens up their supply chain, things get greener across the board. Also, social media can help small eco-businesses get the attention they deserve, too.
AR: What is the biggest issue facing sustainable development today?
CC: I feel completely unqualified to answer that question. Here’s one that I wonder about, though: how can the world preserve the culture and ecology of a place, and yet help it benefit economically and socially from tourism? An obvious question, but a difficult one to answer.
AR: What most inspires you about the Island Intern candidates? Does any one candidate or message stand out to you so far?
CC: They’re so energetic! And creative. I like the candidates that focus on giving. A lot of them have traveled and can do flips or ride bicycles backwards — cool, yes — but I like the ones who are really invested in sustainability.