Green Grotto Caves and Attractions has become the first tourist attraction in Jamaica to receive platinum certification from Earthcheck for environmental best practices, according to the Urban Development Corporation (UDC) which controls the property.
This follows 10 years of continuous certification with EarthCheck, an internationally recognised environmental and management certification programme designed for the travel and tourism industry.
The attraction received the certification last month and will be platinum certified for the period April 2012 to March 2013, a statement from the Corporation said.
In making its assessment, Earthcheck examines key environmental indicators such as energy and water consumption, total waste production, and community commitments to determine an operator’s standard of performance.
Fabia Lamm, manager of Green Grotto Caves and Attractions said the latest certification should result in higher visibility for Jamaica in the fast growing global ecotourism industry.
“This achievement is also significant in the context of our Jamaica 50 celebrations which aims to highlight the best of the nation since independence,” she added.
Platinum certification ranks the attraction as a leader in the unique worldwide group of sustainable tourism operators that are certified to the internationally recognised EarthCheck company standard.
Green Grotto Caves and Attractions were first successfully certified in 2002 and achieved gold certification in 2009.
The tourist attraction was acquired by the UDC in 1999, upgraded and re-opened in April 2000.
Work done over the years include landscaping, improvements to the tour trail, the installation of special effect lighting inside the caves, improved amenities, a snack counter and the recent opening of a logo and souvenir shop.
Green Grotto Caves and Attractions sit on 64 acres of land in Discovery Bay, St. Ann.
A tour of the caves enable visitors to journey into the underground and rediscover Jamaican history. Previously known as Runaway, Dairy, Rum, Hopewell and Dry Harbour Caves, the Green Grotto Caves boast a maze of stalactites, stalagmites and other exquisite formations.