Green Trak To Monterey - Monterey County CVB and Amtrak Team up to Offset Carbon...

Wed May 14, 2008 8:00am EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

Green Trak To Monterey - Monterey County CVB and Amtrak Team up to Offset Carbon Footprint This Summer

   --Nation's First Tourism Bureau/Transit Collaboration Directed at
                         Sustainable Tourism--
MONTEREY COUNTY, Calif.--(Business Wire)--
Make a statement this summer with a green getaway that supports
the environment. Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau and
Amtrak(R) have teamed up in the first collaboration of its kind - a
new Green Trak To Monterey - which offsets the carbon footprint of
every visitor arriving to Monterey County via Amtrak June 1 through
July 31, 2008. Info: www.montereyinfo.org.

   As summer approaches, the recent airline fall out and soaring gas
prices make the ease and luxury of rail travel linking 500
destinations to Monterey County a win-win. Factor in the region's 99
miles of prime Pacific coastline, affordable family lodging and
natural assets from Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary to Point
Lobos State Nature Reserve and a vacation that gives back rejuvenates
mind, body and planet.

   CASH FOR CARBON OFFSETS

   While many eco-conscious travelers are moving into hybrids, public
transit and lifestyle changes touted to reduce their footprint on both
land and greenhouse, the ultimate payback is a simple carbon offset
-or cash purchase toward renewable energy - to balance the scales.
Starting June 1, passengers simply turn their rail ticket into the
Visitors Center at the Maritime Museum, 5 Custom House Plaza in
downtown Monterey and a carbon offset in the name of each traveler
will be purchased via www.nativeenergy.com. The minimum offset is a
one ton fee of $12.00. "This new program perfectly aligns with the
destination's eco-tourism efforts," says John McMahon, CEO of Monterey
County CVB. "By reducing greenhouse emissions via responsible travel,
the nation's new breed of green travelers becomes a catalyst for
change."

   Like Bon Jovi's "Lost Highway World Tour" which recently offset
5,000 tons of carbon dioxide from the six-month tour via
www.nativeenergy, each traveler to Monterey County can elect (via a
visitor center volunteer) the preferred renewable energy credit
including Wind Builder (100% support to wind projects,) Remooable
Energy (100% farm methane projects) or Earth Cooler (50%-50% support
to both wind and farm methane). Offsets are calculated by type of
travel - drive, fly and rail/bus and the debarkation point via
www.nativeenergy.com/travelcalculator.

   GREEN IS GOOD

   Making up for the C02 emissions by reducing our reliance on fossil
fuel plants is certainly a footprint in the right direction and leaves
more time for other green pursuits -- from kayaking to landing for a
cool seaweed wrap at a local spa. Top picks for summer 2009 include:

   --  Hiking the Cypress groves at Point Lobos State Nature Reserve

   --  Kayak Surfing or indulging in a naturalist-led tour to
        Stillwater Cove

   --  Chilling with "Sea Monsters 3-D" at the IMAX theatre on
        Cannery Row

   --  Getting fishy with a new Behind the Scenes Tour at Monterey
        Bay Aquarium

   --  Trekking through the "Salad Bowl of the World" on an
        agricultural tour

   --  Biking along Pebble Beach's renowned 17-Mile Drive

   --  Rock climbing/hiking the conical Pinnacles National Monument

   --  Scouting the natural hot springs and hidden waterfalls of Big
        Sur

   --  Mountain biking the new line-up of off track trails at Fort
        Ord

   --  SCUBA diving the fish-rich waters off San Carlos Beach

   --  Hammering down your handicap at 25 local golf courses

KOLI Comm.
Koleen Hamblin, 800-487-9057
link2koli@aol.com
or
Monterey County CVB
Katie Besmer, 831-657-6413
katie@mccvb.org

Copyright Business Wire 2008
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