Dynamic Variation:

GOAL 1  |  GOAL 2  |  GOAL 3  |  GOAL 4

 

Strategic Goal #2: Adopt an integrated approach to improving environmental stewardship
 

The natural environment in the Outer Banks is valued and dynamic. Much as the predecessors of the area did, we must continue to protect the shores, marine life, parks, and wildlife through our choices and behaviors to ensure a resilient future for generations to come. This integrated approach will also support improved quality of life for residents and quality of place for all.

 

2a. Lead investment in data platforms that allow for real-time analytics and use intel for targeting and education.


OBVB Role: Lead
Timeline: 2024 and Ongoing

Success Metrics: Identification of goals for behavioral change, articulating the data needed, selecting and deploying the best platform to achieve this, training and education (staff or third parties) to analyze data and make it actionable.

Considerations: This will need a robust marketing and communication effort behind it to make the intel actionable to achieve goals on both the targeting and educational aspects.

Desired Result: Intel can be used to educate visitors (and locals) and support behavioral changes.

2b. Further the OBX as a recognized leader in outdoor recreation and stewardship amongst established recreation communities.


OBVB Role: Lead + Convener
Other Organizations: Outdoor recreation companies on the Outer Banks
Timeline: 2025 and Ongoing

Success Metrics: Identification of leaders in this space along with potential events and competitions they know that the OBVB sales staff could work to attract.

Considerations: This would be further enhanced if some of the voluntourism efforts are underway by then and could be customized to attendees of these events for a more personalized experience.

Desired Result: Increase destination competitiveness and attracting visitors who are committed to sustainability.

2c. Collaborate with leading environmentally conscious partners such as the Coastal Studies Institute, NC Coastal Federation, NC Aquariums/Jennette’s Pier, National Park Service and others to further sustainability benchmarks and strategy for visitors.


OBVB Role: Convener
Other Organizations: Environmentally conscious partners
Timeline: 2025-26

Success Metrics: Establishment of benchmarks, progress toward improving results, translating these goals into visitor-facing communication.

Considerations: This would be a great item for the sustainability committee, not as their first item of business, but further down the road when they figure out their purpose and goals.

Desired Result: Identify the necessary uniform metrics and processes to maintain the quality of the environment.

Progress:
February 2024
 – The Outer Banks Visitors Bureau attended its first Coastal Environmental Educators Network (CEEN) meeting and had the opportunity to discuss the Long-Range Tourism Management Plan (LRTMP) and how it intersects with environmental sustainability and stewardship. Attendees included NC Coastal Federation, NC Aquariums, Jockey’s Ridge State Park, Dare County Parks & Recreation, Dare County Soil & Water Department, Dare County Children & Youth Partnership, NOAA Monitor Sanctuary, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Coastal Refuge Complex, OBX Adventures, Island Farm, Elizabethan Gardens and the Outer Banks Community Foundation. Moving forward, the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau will be represented at these monthly meetings, as this group represents a great collection of environmentally conscious partners to collaborate with moving forward.

2d. Advocate for a comprehensive increased investment in roads, sidewalks and clean mobility to expand options for non-vehicular transportation.


OBVB Role: Advocate
Other Organizations: Dare County
Timeline: Long-Term

Success Metrics: Attendance at Dare County Transportation Advisory Board meetings for background and context, getting a tourism board member appointed to this advisory board, and eventually having the board develop advocacy/legislative agenda items to push at each level.

Considerations: Identify the various boards, committees and organizations that work in this space. Sign up for newsletters or other notifications (such as agendas and meetings). Most of these are public, so there is an opportunity to listen and learn before fully participating.

Desired Result: Mitigate traffic gridlock, increase pedestrian safety, enhance local quality of life and increase visitor spending in small local businesses.

2e. Convene a Sustainability Committee to provide ongoing input on tourism strategies that minimize environmental impacts.

OBVB Role: Lead
Other Organizations: Industry partners and organizations concerned with sustainability
Timeline: 2024 and ongoing

Success Metrics: Engaged committee that meets regularly, clearly articulated goals and thoughtful measurements that can track progress.

Considerations: This needs leadership from OBVB to start, but ideally would function independently by individuals from within the ranks of sustainability and stewardship with OBVB there as a participant.

Desired Result: Consistent community and industry engagement related to protecting our natural resources.