West Coast Sightseeing – focusing on people, planet and profit.

Many companies are adopting the triple bottom line as part of their business philosophy and West Coast Sightseeing is one of them. As a proud member of the BC Tourism Industry, we want to do our part in creating a more sustainable future.We are proud participants in the Ambassadors of Conservation program, offered by Tourism Vancouver and BC Hydro, where we are communicating our efforts to the industry. We were also participants in the pilot project of ETHOS BC for Tourism Sustainability Certification.

Our efforts to date:

West Coast Sightseeing embarked on its journey towards sustainability in 2008 and we have been able to see some significant improvements. The biggest step we have taken is to take account of our carbon emissions, which is crucial as a transportation company. We used the Climate Smart program to get a grasp of our emissions and because we are now able to measure our emissions, we can work on reducing and offsetting them. In 2009, for example, we accounted for 465.5 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions that were caused as a result of our operations.

Here are some of our other efforts:

  • Replaced our single sided copier with double sided printing copier
  • We use 100% recycled, FSC certified paper, supplied by Mills Basics
  • Transferred 80%+ of our wholesale suppliers to e-invoicing
  • Moved all our staff to electronic payroll, supplied by Payworks
  • Increased our efforts in e-commerce and have more than tripled our online sales since 2008, Thanks to Zaui Reservation Systems
  • Replaced our fluorescent lighting with new ballasts and modern fluorescent tubes
  • Replaced our track lighting with LED track lighting
  • Created a well-labeled and comprehensive recycling program
  • No idle policy
  • Started offering biking and walking tours in an effort to reduce emissions

Bus Travel – the sustainable travel option

Bus travel is actually one of the most sustainable ways to get around, as fuel consumption on a per passenger basis is lower than you can achieve in any other fossil fuel utilizing mode of transportation. The metric used in the transportation industry is passenger miles per gallon, which allows us to calculate the actual fuel usage per passenger. West Coast Sightseeing currently operates at 95 passenger miles per gallon, which is the equivalent of two people car-pooling in a Toyota Prius! So choosing bus tours means you’re choosing the sustainable option. Our future efforts will involve improving our passenger miles per gallon rating by optimizing capacity loading (a full bus is a good thing in many ways) and by purchasing vehicles that will allow us to allocate the right vehicle for the right group size. We have also decided to offset all our emissions, starting in 2011 and onwards. Click here for more information on becoming carbon neutral and offsetting.

Supporting local business

As part of our sustainability objectives we want to support small locally owned and Canadian businesses. Here is a list:

  • Zaui Software – Suppliers of our reservation software (Vancouver)
  • Mills Basics – Office Supplies for businesses (Vancouver)
  • Ecotrust Canada – Carbon accounting software and reduction program (Vancouver)
  • Dawson Truck Repair – Vehicle Inspection and Repair (Burnaby)
  • Datatrax Technologies – Suppliers of our Point of Sales machines (Toronto)
  • Payworks – Paperless payroll systems (Winnipeg)

Tourism Vancouver Ambassador for Conservation Video

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