• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Effective Environmental Impact Management through Ecotourism

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Environmental Impact Management through Ecotourism Abstract The world has seen the growth of tourism increase dramatically in the past fifty years and with this growth comes a concern for the cultural and environmental impacts associated with it. Ecotourism is the new breed of tourism based around the concept of nature and cultural appreciation, espoused by many to bring significant economic benefits to the host countries as well as being a sustainable alternative to mass tourism. The aim of this paper is to review the literature that focuses on the environmental impacts of ecotourism. This will be achieved through the discussion of five key areas. First, the multitude of definitions surrounding ecotourism will be examined with a view to identifying the core concepts. Second, the key players involved in the ecotourism industry will be identified. Third, the positive and negative impacts associated with ecotourism will be discussed. Fourth, the contributing factors that determine the level of environmental impact. Fifth, the future of ecotourism and how it can be managed. Finally, conclusions and recommendations for future research. Introduction World tourism is growing in terms of number of travellers as well as in economic expansion (World Tourism Organisation (W.T.O), 1997) and as the worlds largest industry (Nelson, 1993) it earns approximately $US 2.5 trillion annually (Dearden, 1993). Tourism takes on many different guises and nature-tourism is one of these, which, in it's most sustainable form has been labelled ecotourism. Within the worldwide tourism industry ecotourism is one of the fastest growing sectors (Eagles, 1995) and according to a 2001 W.T.O and United Nations Environment Programme study ecotourism may represent between two and four percent of global tourism (W.T.O, 1997). ...read more.

Middle

research which takes a much more phenomenological approach and segments eco-tourists into 'shallow' and 'deep' groups. Shallow eco-tourists are of an anthropocentric frame of mind in that they view humans as separate from nature and that nature is an instrument that serves human ends. 'Deep' eco-tourists adopt a much more holistic view of the world and view humans to be intrinsically linked with the environment. Burton (1998) identifies these differing types as 'casual' and 'dedicated' eco-tourists with 'dedicated' ones having higher expectations in terms of the quality of the ecotourism experience. Eco-tourism as a product is delivered by the ecotour operators and companies (Thomlinson, 1996). They characteristically have the parent business located in the base country (predominantly western) who prepare nature tour packages and then co-ordinate with the other half of their business in the destination country (Higgins, 1996). The majority are small-scale operations (Blamey, 1995; McArthur, 1994). This enables the operators to practice environmentally responsible practices and to ensure high quality experiences for the tourists (Burton 1998; Thomlinson, 1996). In compliance with the definition of ecotourism ecotour operators ideally should act in an environmentally responsible manner yet many researchers suggest that they are masquerading as ecotour companies and use the term ecotourism as a marketing tool (Nianyong, 2001; Thomlinson, 1996; Beaumont, 2001; Burton, 1998). With respect to government agencies involvement and attitudes towards ecotourism the content analysis study conducted by Edwards et al. (1998) provides the most comprehensive insight into their agenda's. As well as this empirical study the literature identifies them as playing an important role in the management of the ecotourism industry with them being the creators of the policies which control the exploitation of natural areas (Nianyong, 2001; Chin et al., 2000; Beaumont, 2001; Burton, 1998). ...read more.

Conclusion

Nianyong (2001) also illustrates that governments should be instrumental in helping to develop environmentally responsible policies within their country as well as providing funds for research. Yet in the case of Nianyongs' research which was a survey conducted in China, he points out that a lot of ecotourism destinations are in the third world, this is can be seen in the way that most of the case studies on ecotourism are based in the third world. These host countries can't afford to provide funds for appropriate ecotourism development, a point corroborated by Chin et al. (2000) whose study was based in Malaysia. Yet paradoxically authorities were responsible for increasing the number of eco-tourists to the Bako national park in 1988 through tourism promotion. Chin et al. (2000) suggests that this was driven by economic interests. The next area of discussion focuses on how eco-tour operators affect the level of environmental impact that ecotourism destinations experience. As previously mentioned it is suggested that eco-tour operators are simply exploiting the concept of ecotourism by using it as a marketing tool. Burton (1998) cites a number of researchers who suggest that surveys indicate that a large number of eco-tour operators cannot be considered to act in an environmentally responsible manner (Botrill and Pearce, 1995; Weiler, 1992; Holden & Kealy, 1996; Jones, 1993). This obviously has serious implications for the level of environmental impact and in Belize supposedly ecotourism companies have destroyed large swaths of mangrove swamps in order to develop luxury bungalows (Thomlinson, 1996). Also although most eco-tour operators are small businesses there are so many of them they can negatively impact the environment through a cumulative effect (Thomlinson, 1996; Beaumont, 2001). ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Global Interdependence & Economic Transition section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Global Interdependence & Economic Transition essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Investigating Travel & Tourism

    5 star(s)

    Regional Tourist Boards support the work of the national tourist boards to promote the domestic tourism. There are 10 regional tourist boards in England and there are 3 in Wales. Even though the tourist boards receive money from the central government they still have get their income from commercial activities such as subscriptions from their members and revenue from advertisements.

  2. Tourism in LEDC's creates environmental and social problems whilst bringing limited economic benefits. How ...

    The most recent example was in the Bali bombing of 2002 by Al Quaeda, who are opposed to western values and their perceived impact upon Muslim countries. The attacks often have political motives and are an attempt to put pressure on the government to implement change.

  1. The post-war Development of the Travel and Tourism Industry.

    * The growth of regional airports has also increased due to the amount of people wanting to travel abroad. Airports have many facilities which make it easier for the public. There are monorails and coaches to the airport from the car parks that make it so much more accessible to get the airport.

  2. Consider the Defining Features of Dependency Theory and distinguish its Major Variants. Discuss the ...

    These writers include Cardoso, Faletto, Quijano, Ianni and Fernandes. The Marxist position, taken up by writers, such as Cardoso, focuses on the importance of class analysis, unlike the neo-Marxists that focus on the centre and the periphery. This is seen to be a much more empirical approach, rather than theoretical, like the neo-Marxist perspective.

  1. Economic, Social and Environmental Impacts of Tourism: Antipodes

    Social Positive Impact Traveling brings people into contact with each other and, as tourism has an educational element, it can foster understanding between peoples and cultures and provide cultural exchange between hosts and guests. Because of this, the chances increase for people to develop mutual sympathy and understanding and to reduce their prejudices.

  2. Development of the leisure and recreation industry

    The structure of my work will contain the following sub headings: 1. Consumer spending in the UK 2. Employment Statistics 3. Participation trends 4. Cultural & Social significance These all will show the economic standing of this industry in the UK and some sense of social issues surrounding the topic.

  1. Travel And Tourism Case Studies

    You could also join one of the walking tours that operate, seeing and learning a bit about Munich at the same time. Airport Munich airport is between 30 and 45 minutes away from Munich to it's east and slightly north.

  2. Sustainable Tourism in Australia

    Tourism Australia works together with many different members to make all their policies, strategies and impacts work well. These members include: * Adelaide convention and tourism authority * Brisbane Marketing * Cairns an region convention bureau * Canberra convention bureau * Gold coast tourism bureau * Melbourne convention and visitors

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work