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National News, December 2021

MCSA National News 9 Dec 2021 National News, December 2021


The official theme for 2021 is sustainable mountain tourism.
Sustainable tourism in mountains can contribute to creating additional and alternative livelihood options and promoting poverty alleviation, social inclusion, as well as landscape and biodiversity conservation. It is a way to preserve the natural, cultural and spiritual heritage, to promote local crafts and high value products, and celebrate many traditional practices such as local festivals.
Mountain tourism attracts around 15 to 20 percent of global tourism. Tourism, however, is one of the sectors most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, affecting economies, livelihoods, public services and opportunities on all continents. In mountains, the restrictions of the pandemic have further compounded the vulnerabilities of mountain communities.
This crisis can be seen as an opportunity to rethink mountain tourism and its impact on natural resources and livelihoods, to manage it better, and to harness it towards a more resilient, green and inclusive future.


This is a continuing call for contributions for the 2021 Journal (No 124). Please download and familiarise yourselves with the Guidelines, StyleSheet and use the Photo Template on the MCSA National website, to be found on this link:

The deadline is 31 January 2022.  

Please do take note that submissions are to be as WORD documents (not formatted), and please take note of the procedures for photographs.  Send to

Thank you and looking forward to some super contributions!


There are 1-2 places available to join Norman Owen-Smith on a 13-day trek following the Galana River through Tsavo National Park in Kenya during mid-February. This is fully supported slack-packing. For more information, contact or google ‘Walking with Giants’ via Africa Geographic.


The UIAA continues pretty well all of its normal activities with numbers of initiatives on the go. Members are urged to go to the UIAA web site – – for more information plus a load of other useful data.


Since COP21 in Paris in 2015, the UIAA has had a regular presence at the conference. Spearheaded by its Mountain Protection Commission, this forms part of the UIAA’s active involvement in international events and initiatives related to climate change and the mountain environment. This includes activities related to the MoU between the UIAA and the United Nations Environment Programme signed in 2020.

On 4 November, the UIAA announced that it has become a signatory and launch partner of the Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism.

The UIAA has also published two statements related to its commitment to Climate Change projects – 2015, aligning with COP objectives2019, a summary of Climate Change commitments following the 2019 UIAA General Assembly.

The UIAA is also represented in the Sustainable Summits Conference documentary for COP26. This will be premiered on Tuesday 9 November. The film will also be released on the Sustainable Summits YouTube and their website shortly after the premiere.

The official trailer can be found at:


As you will all know – from careful reading of previous Newsletters(!) – the UIAA Mountain Protection Award was recently finalised. The MCSA entered with a heli-hacking project in the Fynbos Biome and we had high hopes! These were unfortunately not realised but we are free to enter it again next year, if it is so decided.
The winners of the various categories are given here (below):

  • Giroparchi Nature Trail – by Fondation Grand Paradis, a project based in the north of Italy was named as winner of the 2020-2021 UIAA Mountain Protection Award partnered by the Bally Peak Outlook Foundation.
  • MacGillycuddy Reeks – European Innovation Partnership Project from Ireland has been named Runner-Up as part of the 2020-2021 UIAA Mountain Protection Award
  • Zéro Déchet Mont Blanc – with the No Bins Project has been named Best New Initiative as part of the 2020-2021 UIAA Mountain Protection Award

All very worthy projects and we congratulate the winners. Go to the link below to access the YouTube video of the award ceremony and links to the projects.

However – there is always a however – your Editor is quite sure that if some of the MCSA initiatives were properly formulated and presented, we would be a shoo-in for the award. I am thinking specifically of our outreach programmes country-wide. How about it guys..??!! I have bounced this off a couple of people at the UIAA and they are in agreement that we have a real shot! And EUR20 000 translates into a LOT of Rands! Watch this space.


Many countries offer regular courses in mountain medicine. The medical commissions of the UIAA and ICAR, together with the International Society for Mountain Medicine (ISMM) established minimal requirements for a formal diploma course in August 1997 (Interlaken, Switzerland). Many course organisers adopted these standards and the resulting Diploma in Mountain Medicine (DiMM) has become a widely respected qualification. The regulations have been updated to reflect developments in mountain medicine, and to ensure that the high standard of the DiMM is maintained. It is the intention of the UIAA Medical Commission to bring these courses and training opportunities to all parts of the world, and possibly where such courses are not on offer yet. In 2022, MedCom is planning to run a dedicated course alongside its annual meeting, scheduled to be held in South Africa. It is due to take place in Stellenbosch with the intent to cover topics specific to the needs of the country.


7.1 National: abbreviated link for the national MCSA Facebook page:
7.2 Links for all the sections’ web pages are on the MCSA national webpage.


Please send any newsworthy items for inclusion in MCSA National News Letter to Greg Moseley at:

These have been distinctly lacking over the last years – so please remember to send any items that may be of interest to the broader, national membership for inclusion here.


“We always destroy the thing we love the most”.

Oscar Wilde

Thandi Davies

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