Guiding Principles

The following principles guide the operation of our business and our activities in the areas we visit.

Reduction of Environmental Impacts

  • Leave all program and operation areas as pristine as we found them. Leave no trace of our passing except for footprints.
  • Remove all of our garbage, including human wastes when wilderness camping and, if possible, clean up messes left by others.
  • Reduce our impact in terms of energy consumption and material usage whenever possible, in all operations and administrative locations.
  • Consciously make purchases of goods with forethought to pre-cycling as well as re-using and recycling, whenever possible.
  • Voluntarily limit or decrease the use of any area if our activities are degrading the environment.
  • Disperse our impact on the wild lands of Alaska so the use of the areas we visit can be sustainable.
  • Identify those areas we impact and work to mitigate and prevent further degradation.
  • Be a contributor to the conservation of the regions we visit.

Wildlife Viewing

  • Approach all wildlife in such a manner that our presence does not disturb them or change their behavior. This will sometimes require observing animals from a distance even though the opportunity exists to move closer.
  • Avoid critical habitat areas, such as nesting areas, that are particularly important to wildlife survival.

Guest Information and Education

  • Distribute these guidelines to our guests in advance of their visit.
  • Prepare travelers to minimize their negative impacts while visiting sensitive environments.
  • Impart natural history information during our trips to enhance appreciation and understanding of wild Alaska to our guests.
  • Aim to present all sides of environmental issues of the areas affected by our visits so that our guests understand fully the issues, choices and challenges that we face in protecting wild areas.
  • Promote awareness with others and share information and environmental practices with the community in which we live and with the agencies with whom we work.

Business Activities

  • Approach our business with the idea of sustainability so that decisions made today will not result in depriving following generations of a quality environment.
  • Be up-front, forthright and honest in all business dealings, including interactions with guests, staff, other businesses and the land agencies for which we are permitted.
  • Model and describe ideas, techniques and systems so that other businesses may follow in the pursuit of sustainable tourism and a socially responsible business.
  • Contribute a voice in the communities in which we operate and within organizations to which we belong to guide Alaska tourism toward sustainability and appropriate use of resources.
  • Contribute a minimum of 10% of our pre-tax earnings to conservation organizations and causes.

Ecotourism: An Innovative Tool to Promote the Conservation of Wild Areas

Often misused as a catch phrase describing nature travel, ecotourism actually represents a means of protection for remote wild areas through sound and sustainable economic development. To truly be successful, ecotour operators not only tread lightly but also set limits upon their use of the land and its resources.

Here are some ways that Alaska Wildland Adventures promotes and practices this important concept.

  1. Businesses seek environmentally sustainable economic growth while minimizing visitor impacts on wildlands, wildlife, Native cultures and local communities by offering literature, briefings, leading by example, taking corrective action or other appropriate means.
  2. Travel modes and facilities used maintain a low impact on the natural environment; tour use is sustainable over time without significantly altering the resource or negatively affecting the experience.
  3. Businesses provide direct benefits to the local economy and local inhabitants thereby providing an incentive for local support and preservation of wild areas and wildlife habitat.
  4. Businesses seek appropriate means to minimize their effects on the environment in all phases of their operations including office practices.
  5. Businesses ensure that managers, staff and contract employees know and participate in all aspects of company policy to prevent impacts on the environment, Native cultures and local communities.
  6. There is an educational emphasis and purposeful desire for travelers to learn about the natural and cultural history of the places they visit.
  7. There is a formula for the business and guest to contribute to local non-profit efforts for environmental protection.
  8. The travel is in the spirit of appreciation, participation and sensitivity. At some point, a tour group becomes too large to be considered "ecotourism."