We have a heightened focus on all aspects of sustainability that impact the environment in our destinations and in our offices. Our passion for exploring the planet goes hand-in-hand with our desire to protect it.
As a result, we’re committed to carbon reduction and mitigation, wildlife protection and animal welfare, preserving habitats and landscapes, encouraging green transportation options where possible and reducing plastic usage, waste and energy consumption. To help with this, in addition to our Audley Sustainability Policy, we have specific policies that hold our business to high standards in these areas.
Animal Welfare Policy
White rhino in the Kruger National Park, South Africa
Working with animal welfare experts, we’ve extensively reviewed the experiences we offer involving animals. As a result, we’ve created and implemented a comprehensive set of policies to ensure your trip doesn’t have a detrimental effect on the welfare of working, captive or wild animals. This has included phasing out a number of experiences that didn’t meet our animal welfare standards and introducing ethical alternatives.
Where possible, animal encounters that we offer will have a positive effect, either on the individual animals you’re seeing or on the species as a whole. For example, proceeds from visiting a well-run animal sanctuary will help to support its work, while seeing wild animals in their natural environment encourages local people to conserve species and their habitats as they themselves see the benefits from wildlife tourism.
As well as actively avoiding experiences that exploit animals, we’re always trying to encourage our local partners to improve animal welfare standards.
Alternative elephant experiences
There are real concerns over the welfare of captive elephants in the tourism industry. With that in mind, we no longer offer elephant riding as an activity. Instead, we’re keen to offer alternative experiences that place elephant welfare first. We have stringent policies to ensure that elephants are:
- genuinely rescued and not sourced from the wild or commercial trading, or through captive breeding
- kept in conditions that meet their physical and behavioural needs, including social interaction with other elephants and the opportunity to forage, as well as constant access to clean water, appropriate food and shelter
- not subject to physical or verbal abuse
- not trained to perform unnatural acts, such as circus performances or elephant polo
Wild elephant in Kui Buri National Park, Thailand
Currently, we work with a limited number of suppliers that offer elephant riding locally for non-Audley guests. However, we’re encouraging them to stop offering this by setting them a deadline: if, by the end of 2021, they’re still offering elephant riding, we’ll no longer use their services.
We know that the first step in reducing our carbon footprint as a business is keeping the amount of carbon we use to a minimum. We’re always looking for innovative ways of doing this, both in our offices and on our staff research trips. The next step is looking at carbon offsetting.
We’ve been offering clients the opportunity to carbon offset their flights for years. Working closely with our long-time partner, ClimateCare, we offset our business-related air travel and encourage our clients to do the same.
If you’re flying from the UK, the quote for your trip will include an optional amount for carbon offsetting your flights, which can be paid at the time of booking. If you’re flying from any other part of the world, you can use our carbon calculator, run by ClimateCare, to assess and offset your flights.
Please complete the form below to carbon offset your flights. You can choose to change the currency you pay in. Your payment will be made directly to ClimateCare, which is a wholly separate company to Audley, and will be subject to ClimateCare’s terms of business.
What will your carbon offsetting support?
All the projects we support have a clear carbon reduction goal to combat climate change. They also have significant positive social and environmental effects.
The current project we support is BURN and the production and distribution of Jiokoa’s stoves in Kenya.
These very efficient stoves use much less fuel than woodburning equivalents and cook up to 50% faster. Not only do they release less CO2, they also help to reduce deforestation due to the collection of firewood.
Furthermore, they allow families to use money that would otherwise have been spent on fuel for other needs, as well as reducing the amount of unhealthy smoke particles released by stoves. The stoves are made in a solar-powered factory in Nairobi that employs 100 local people, with a strong emphasis on gender equality.
Jiokoa stove, Kenya
Other projects we’ve supported include LifeStraws for families in Kenya. These ingenious water filters take away the need to boil water to purify it, reducing the use of firewood and other carbon fuels and lowering the spread of waterborne diseases. Our support for these filters has provided millions of litres of clean water for well over 1,000 families.
In Ranthambhore, India, Kenya’s Masai Mara and South Africa’s Kruger National Park, biogas and solar stove projects have reduced the need for villages to collect firewood, in turn helping to reduce deforestation, limit conflict with wildlife and tackle health issues related to smoke inhalation.
Solar lighting introduced to ranger stations and checkpoints in a number of India’s national parks has replaced ineffective and more polluting kerosene lighting to allow better policing of the parks.