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Advantage agrees expanded deal with sustainability specialist Thrust Carbon

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TMC consortium Advantage Travel Partnership is expanding its partnership with sustainability data specialist Thrust Carbon to provide more activities and benefits for members to “support their sustainability journeys”.

The two organisations, which have already been working together for several years, announced that Thrust Carbon has become an official sustainability partner to Advantage during the consortium’s annual conference in the Mexican resort of Cancun on Thursday (16 May).

The new deal includes an “enhanced” commercial agreement, as well as initiatives for Advantage’s TMC members such as providing a series of educational webinars and regulation guides to help them “measure, analyse and significantly reduce their carbon impact”. Thrust Carbon will also support Advantage’s central ESG team and members’ steering group.

A further move will see Thrust Carbon supporting Advantage’s own sustainability efforts as an organisation, starting with its analysis of the carbon footprint of hosting the consortium’s current conference in Cancun.

Julia Lo Bue-Said, CEO of The Advantage Travel Partnership, added that the expanded agreement with Thrust Carbon would “add a further layer to our efforts in supporting our members with their sustainability goals”.

“It will mean that they will now have the opportunity to take advantage of sustainable technology for their clients and educational resources for themselves, designed to help them understand and implement practical ways to reduce travel industry carbon emissions,” she said.

Advantage will also work closely with Thrust Carbon to build on its 10-point conference and events charter, which was launched at the consortium’s conference in Benidorm in 2023.

During a conference session, Thrust Carbon presented pre-event data that it had collected on the event in Cancun to “understand the environmental benefits achieved through the mindful planning” of the conference.

This revealed that the event created total emissions of 694.711 tCO2e (tonnes of CO2 equivalent) or 1.853 tCO2e per delegate, including flights to Cancun. The total figure is equivalent to driving a small car to the moon 16.4 times.

“I would hope that we have set a precedent for future travel events, enabling participants to consider their carbon footprint as a whole measure, consciously considering the overall positive impact of purposeful travel – from engagement with local communities through to conservation and environmental initiatives,” added Lo Bue-Said.

This work will continue through the creation of the Post-Event Calculations & Sustainability Events Charter. This includes conducting “comprehensive post-event analyses to continue tracking and enhancing sustainability efforts” across all of Advantage’s events.

The conference also featured workshops to provide Advantage members and their clients with “actionable strategies for embedding sustainability into their operations”.

Mark Corbett, founder of Thrust Carbon, said: “This is the perfect moment to enhance our relationship with the Advantage Travel Partnership, one of our very first partners in the industry.

“Working together presents a remarkable opportunity to drive the travel and hospitality industry towards a more sustainable future. It’s not just about doing what’s right today, it’s about future-proofing businesses.”

Corbett added that the expanded partnership proved that sustainability and running successful travel business were “not mutually exclusive but are, in fact, fundamentally interconnected”.

London-based Advantage was ranked as the third largest TMC network in Europe by BTN Europe in 2023 with gross global sales of €12.9 billion in 2022.

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