It's no secret, the success of New Zealand tourism lies in the beauty of our landscapes. We are committed to doing what we can to keep it that way. It's that commitment to responsible and sustainable tourism that earned us the Qualmark Enviro Gold Award, the highest environmental award available to a tourism business, and put us in the company of an elite few motorhome rental operators. In order to achieve the Qualmark Enviro Gold Award, we had to back our commitment to environmental and social responsibility with action in areas such as energy efficiency, waste management, conservation, and community activities.
However, OUR commitment to the environment means little without YOUR support. That's why we have developed the Wilderness Environmental Care Code. It outlines the actions we are taking to minimise our impact on the environment and provides a guide for our customers to do their part as well. It’s a two way partnership between you the Traveller and us the Operator.
The Wilderness Environmental Care Code (ECC)
Dispose of waste responsibly – Only use approved dump stations for disposing of grey water and toilet waste (see dump station guide in your campervan touring atlas). Remove all rubbish when you leave a camp site. Place in litter bins and paper, glass, cans, and plastic in recycling bins where provided.
Camp only where permitted – Observe local camping rules. Check the wild camping guide before planning your overnight stay.
Take extreme care with fire - Always observe and obey fire restrictions. When cooking outdoors, only use a barbeque or built-in fireplace provided.
Protect plants and animals – New Zealand is home to countless unique, rare, and endangered species. When bush walking, always keep to the track. Follow instructions if you are asked to clean your footwear, fishing or other gear to reduce the spread of plant and animal diseases. Don’t destroy trees for firewood.
Plant more trees – You can offset the carbon emitted on your New Zealand road trip by contributing to our Carbon Offset Programme (see below). Our partner organisation will plant trees which will absorb carbon reducing the impact your trip has on our environment.
Provide low emission vehicles – All our vehicles meet Euro IV emission standards, the highest in the automotive industry.
Provide certified self-contained vehicles - All our vehicles are fitted with wastewater tanks and either a fixed or portable toilet allowing you to dispose of unsanitary waste products correctly. They also comply with New Zealand's strict self-containment standards (NZS 5465:200).
Maintain our vehicles - All vehicles are maintained to the highest standard and tuned correctly to minimise harmful emissions.
Clean and green base operations - Our base operations are also carried out efficiently and with minimal waste. For example, we use energy efficient equipment and power saving techniques to reduce our power demand, recycle all recyclable materials, and use environmentally friendly cleaning products to reduce the impact on the environment.
Million Metres Streams Project
Let's face it, most forms of modern travel have a negative impact on the environment and motorhome travel is no exception. So we've teamed up with a local non-profit organisation to do something positive for our environment. The Million Metres Streams Project was set up to restore the health of New Zealand waterways by planting trees along the banks of the streams (riparian planting). Riparian planting is vital to the health of our freshwater ecosystems.
Our hirers are invited to contribute to the Million Metres Streams Project. These contributions help fund the trees planted by volunteer community groups alongside waterways across New Zealand. Wilderness will match every NZ$1 contributed by our hirers to the Million Metres Streams Project.
Our November 2015 donation to the Million Metres contributed to the Hoteo 1 project. The Hoteo River catchment drains into the Kaipara – the second-largest harbour in the world. We, along with our Wilderness explorers, helped take action to protect and sustain these vital resources and beautiful landscape.
If you are about to embark on your New Zealand adventure, help offset the carbon emissions by contributing to the MMS programme.