Discuss about the Ecotourism and Its Impacts in Developing Countries.
In a systematic study, Bauer (2017) denotes that poverty in many areas of the Global South is the primary driver of environmental and resource degradation. The attempt of the community to adopt socio-economic activities such as mining and agriculture among other economic activities have been identified as the primary causes of environmental degradation and depletion of natural resources. As a result, ecotourism and bioprospecting are pointed as the better alternative approaches of income that can be adopted with the aim of reducing the pressure on the natural resources. Becken (2012) argues that in case the society can generate income from the less environmentally damaging activities that focus on the wilderness, forests, and other natural resources, then there is a possibility of achieving sustainability. This paper hence focuses on evaluating how ecotourism links to development and conservation and whether the linkage is effectively robust in the attempt of achieving the set objectives.
Advantages of ecotourism
The promotion of ecotourism in the Global South has resulted into positive impacts on both economy and the environment within the developing countries. Carter et al. (2015) point out that ecotourism has been adopted as one of the primary justifications with the aim of preservation of natural resources. The same study denotes that ecotourism has led to the development of designated national protected areas putting ecotourism organizations among the leading movements in environmental preservation. Bauer (2017) also reports that the emphasis and programs on the need of preserving the natural environment with the aim of promoting ecotourism has led to the widespread preservation of forests in many areas. Even though deforestation is still a major challenge for many states in the Global South, the adoption of ecotourism strategies have reduced the level of deforestation over time.
In addition of achieving the goals of environmental sustainability, (Rosaleen, 2015) points out that ecotourism in the developing countries has led to the generation of significant economic development in both local and national levels. The same study denotes that since 2000, economic development due to international tourism has grown from $417 million to $737 million. It is a phenomenal growth that has made tourism be recognized as the leading source of foreign exchange in developing countries.
Despite its moderately new rise, ecotourism is the quickest developing part inside the tourism business – the world's biggest administration industry. This is somewhat because of the rising number of naturally mindful people who have floated towards ecotourism, because of its blend of one of a kind travel encounters and the fulfilment of being socially and earth cognizant (Lisa, 2014). In particular, developing countries have turned into pioneers in the encouraging of ecotourism, as they perceive that safeguarding characteristic assets and scenes might be more financially savvy than clearing the land for other capital-escalated exercises, for example, cultivating, logging, or mining (Rosaleen, 2015).While the business has confronted challenges in orchestrating its natural standards with the developing interest for ecotourism, alongside the enticement of benefit age, the ecological and financial favourable circumstances of ecotourism have far surpassed these weaknesses (Kitchin, & Law, 2001).
Eco tourism gives new avenues of Employment to Local as pointed out by Carter et al. (2015). More avenues for work are coming up in view of the growing enthusiasm of lodgings, resorts and diverse offices outfitted with talented and arranged specialists, informed tour guides, traders offering loads of essential things, and diners offering a variety of first class foods. Ecotourism has conveyed out collaboration that has prompted cultural knowledge and exchange between communities. According to Imrie (2004), eco-tourism isn't just about examining phenomenal scenes, managing trademark resources, and enhancing the economy of a particular region. It goes with extraordinary socio-social effects. While going to better places, tourists end up interacting with the local communities, an aspect that enable them learn new cultures. In the process, Keen, Perry, and Strand (2012) denote that there are cases where exchange of culture has occurred such as the purchase of cultural products, talents, and works of art. In the process, ecotourism promotes not only the conservation but economic development, cultural exchange, and employment creation to the locals.
Disadvantages of ecotourism
Despite the advantages that a state may enjoy in adopting stable ecotourism as an alternative source of livelihood to the communities, Carter et al. (2015) denote that it also negative impacts towards sustainability and economic development. The study denotes that in many cases, most of the non-local ecotourism organizations tend to achieve environmental credibility with the Northern consumers despite the local socio-economic or environmental benefits that accompany it. Despite the huge revenue collected by such organizations, most of it is not shared with the locals in a sufficient manner that reduces unequal wealth distribution or minimizes environmental degradation. Rosaleen (2015) also denotes that increase in the revenue collected cannot effectively reduce the pressure on the environmental resources of the revenue is only shared with the foreign companies while avoiding the local communities who directly interact with the environment. In other words, it should be understood that ecotourism is a by-product of development and hence requires the developmental revenue to be accrued locally to with the aim of achieving conservation and sustainable use of environmental resources.
According to Tumusiime and Sjaastad (2014), the environmental effects of ecotourism development are serious and needs urgent attentions. The study denotes that is many popular destinations, natural attractions of the areas have been destroyed due to irrational activities and overcrowding leading to lose of aesthetic value of the areas. In Philippines for instance, mining of corals and dynamiting for resort building materials has damaged fragile corals as well as the depletion of fisheries which sustains the local communities. Maria et al. (2011) also denotes that inadequate sewage treatment along the costal tourism areas has led to the pollution of waterways and lagoons thus making the locals waters unsuitable for fishing and swimming among other uses. In most of the popular resorts, Snyman (2012) denotes that overbuilding beachfront hotels contributes to beach erosion, disappearance of natural wetlands, and flooding. It also leads to the generation of mountains of garbage with poor disposal means hence leading to production of bad smell that in the long run makes the areas unsuitable for healthy living.
Ecotourism has likewise been related with the interruption smooth peaceful state of the Wildlife (Snyman, 2012). Every sort of tourism meddles with the silent and unique common life. Regardless of groups of progression of eco-tourism, people couldn't think less about the trouble caused to the flying creatures and animals on account of their absurd demands, wishes and direct. They genuinely don't make effort to wind up evidently real eco-voyagers. It definitely powers negative effects on the environment and impacts the organic modify. Because of developments in the natural life destinations prompts uncomfortable life of the creatures like clamours from vehicle which will result to refinement of a few animal categories additionally littering can likewise prompt terrible ecological impacts can likewise make maladies the creatures.
Ecotourism has failed to meet the eco standard. As ecotourism is basically a business industry (with the essential target of benefit expansion), there is proof of specific organizations just "green-washing" - which is the procedure of just influencing the occasion to show up eco-accommodating when it is in actuality not. There isn't much substance required for an organization to term an occasion 'ecotourism' and they frequently neglect to get investigated by buyers. For instance, a 'natural life amusement stop' is permitted to term itself as being 'Eco'. There is however a call for control -, for example, a Green Star framework, which signs to shoppers how dedicated the organization is to ecological kind disposition (Maria et al, 2015). Due to the demand of ecotourism most companies in the sector tend to be selfish to a level that they forgo meeting the eco standards for making extensive profits in the expense of environ mental protection and has been a great negative impact to the sector (Scheyvens, 2007).
In many studies, environmental protection has become a primary aspect of effective developmental agenda. Eco-tourism has been adopted as a means of resolving tension and challenges between environmental protection and development in the Global South. It has been adopted as an alternative source of income for the Global South in the pursuit of development, it is vital to understand that the attempt of reconciling environmental protection goals often lead to misconception of the objectives leading to more concentration and reduced focus on environmental stewardship. However, there are advantages and disadvantages of adopting ecotourism. As a result, it is essential to evaluate and understand the risks involved in the attempt of pursuing development agenda and environmental protection, an aspect that should be considered both globally and the local communities that directly interact with the environment.
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