Prepare a discussion paper proposing the preparation of a new tourism plan or policy to address an emerging tourism issue. For example, this issue might be an emerging crisis such as the global financial crisis or the Brexit; or an outbreak of a transmittable disease such as avian flu; or a long-term issue such as climate change, coral bleaching or even a planned deviation of a major highway to bypass a tourist town.
The report will contain the following information:
- position statement – this statement clearly indicates all the assumptions you have made about who you work for, the agency’s goals and the particular goals and objectives of the policy issue or problem that your paper is addressing. This serves as the introduction
- background context – a discussion of issues that have influenced the emergence of this particular issue, ensuring that you have research and properly referenced your discussion a statement of need – a background statement on why the tourism plan is needed (consider the role of government, business and other stakeholders, and its possible reasons for government intervention)
- scope of the proposed plan identification of possible policy approaches and instruments that the plan or policy will consider (this helps scope or provide direction to those who might be preparing the plan/policy)
- proposed process an outline of a proposed planning process including details of consultation, implementation and review
Factors Causing the Decrease of Tourism Products and Diversity Sustainability
Tourism industry is regarded as one of the largest revenue income sectors in Australia. Through the globalization change, the industry has continued to face many challenges which have led to an increase in competition in the entire market. The research has been largely based on the continuous decrease in the tourism product diversification. Currently, the most focus of improving tourism in Australia has been largely emphasized in advertising in large markets such as Europe where customers are known for high spending (Smith, 2014). With the ongoing changes, customer segmentation has been one of the key issues where it becomes harder and harder to convince customers to return for the same services which are also declining in quality (Bramwell and Lane, 2011). With this in mind, in order to have a continuous tourism growth, the federal and States governments must create better plans and policies that will be able to generate tourism product improvement in the indigenous area.
Majorly, the policy and plan implementation will emphasis on the shift of quantity focus to the product quality in the industry display. Some of the main activities in quality emphasis include encouraging product development and diversification, protecting the environment, reducing infrastructure pressure among others. The tourism brand of Australia is considered as one of the most unique landscapes ranging from tropical rainforests, unspoiled beaches, vast tracts of desert, and rugged mountain ranges. Some of the main unique Australian features include The Great Barrier Reef, Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, Uluru Ayers Rock, and much more. The Great Barrier Reef is one few best natural wonder in Australia where it is considered to be as big as Ireland and the UK combined (Briassoulis and Van Der Straaten, 2013). This features and others have continued to diminish their valuable price in global tourism and thus also in the entire Australia tourism industry.
Like in the most countries, the controversy of economic diversification is one of the undetermined issues that continue to negatively impact the tourism industry. The industry evolution has been one of the main focus in most countries development and this has continued to require significant room and resources for effective development. With this, the government has focused on redistributing the available resources to more comparative advantage sectors (Mason, 2015). The tourism economy in Australia has faced a series of “contamination” in the line of development of other poor sectors. Example, over the years Vanuatu percentage income has been largely contributed by tourism industries with an estimate of about 65% which has lately fluctuated because of the increase in the construction sectors in the area. Also, more companies and business continue to set-up around Vanuatu completely changing the economic structure of the area. The change in the economic trend of the area has significantly reflected the negative impact on the tourism industry of Vanuatu which is in relation to most of Australian best tourism brands (Ruhanen, Whitford, and McLennan, 2015).
The total forest cover of Australia can be estimated to be approximately 21.3%. This includes an estimation of about 3.2% biodiverse form of forest. From the year 1990 to 2000, about 325,900 hectares of forest has been lost annually which is an average of 0.2% of deforestation rate. Despite various actions taken to minimize the deforestation, between 1990 and 2010 Australia lost approximately 3.4% of the forest cover which is about 5,200,000 ha (Hooper and Van Zyl, 2011). Through the projections, in the next decade, over 3 million ha of untouched forest will have been cut down to provide room and support for economic development. On the same note, these forest covers provide host to more than 2336 known species of birds, amphibians, reptiles, and mammals. About 67.5% of the total animal population is considered to be not in existence in any other country in the world except Australia. With the continuous changes, about 8.9% of the species are considered to be endangered to a point of extinction. Also, in about 15638 plant species, 6.7% of the total population is considered to be endangered (Swanson and Edgell Sr, 2013). This is another prime factor that has decreased and/or threatened the diversification of tourism product in Australia.
Economic Development and Tourism
The urban development in Australia has been of key leading factors that have immensely contributed to the destruction of vegetation in the country. In Queensland, approximately about 395,000 hectares are cleared annually for the provision of a room for construction for various projects. The percentage of land being cleared in Queensland has continued to increase reaching about 30% and its estimated to even continue to grow in the coming years. Apart from the clearing process, most of the waste materials from the entire clearing process are dumped in the Great Barrier Reef. The destruction of the vegetation and scenery beauty of the main features such as the Great Barrier Reef for other economic boost is one of the major things that continue to slow down the tourism growth (Gurran, Norman, and Hamin, 2013). Through the clearing of the land, greenhouse gas emission has continued to increase, impacting significant change in climate change. The same land transformation and environmental effect have also been perceived in other parts of the countries such as Northern Territory where approximately 45,500 hectares are cleared annually (Lamont and Buultjens, 2011). This can, therefore, be considered as a major threat and challenge in the tourism industry in Australia.
As mentioned earlier, Climate change is another issue that has increasingly contributed to the decrease of tourism product development and diversification in Australia. Tourism in Australia is heavily dependent on the ‘nature-based tourism’ which is considered to be one of the most affected segments of tourism in the world. It is considered that even though most of the sceneries may survive from destruction, the quality will be lost thus also leading to a decrease in tourist number, especially in domestic tourism. Through this, Australia is estimated to lose even more than degradation of the attraction sites to other costs such as replacement costs for capital infrastructure and the costs of adaptation (Getz, 2008). On the other hand, the intervention in trying to neutralize carbon emission will also negatively influence the cost of transportation. This will also restructure the customer perception of the Australia tourism market which will be very unrealistic as compared to other countries, especially those in Africa.
Technology and industry revolution can be considered as one of the main impacts in the global tourism industry. This majorly comprises the transportation industry which also accounts for a large part of the tourism. Apart from the use of car, heating, lighting, etc., more half of the total CO2 emitted is considered to be as part of transportation facilities and industries. Through the technology change, the entire perspective of cultural dynamics has also been significantly changed (Hall, 2009). An example can be perceived from Australia indigenous culture and practices which are highly considered as an imitation of America and Europe. Despite the small percentage number of the indigenous group in Australia, social media and use of technology have highly influenced the practices of the culture which is a significant attraction factor in the Australian tourism industry (Girard and Nijkamp, 2009). With the growing use of technology and social media influence, Australia tourism industry will be considered to loss of value with the diminishing of the indigenous cultural practices.
The Negative Environmental Effect in Australia Tourism
Nature-based tourism is one of the majorly affected tourism segments by the environmental negative changes. An example is Brisbane which is constantly affected by flash floods that stretches from Toowoomba city. Through the floods, there is significant loss and destruction of properties and businesses thus also “crumbling” the tourism customer entry in the country. Apart from natural environmental hazards, Australia is one of the carbon-emitting nations which is a serious concern the global tourism industry (Richards and Munsters, 2010). The continuous land degradation or pressure in the environment for the extraction of natural resources such as oil, minerals, and others has caused an imbalance of natural resources. Through this, the scramble for available resources has enhanced the decrease of tourism products and the sustenance of diverse species features. The depletion of environment sustenance has also been contributed by the increase of pollution deposition major from industries. With this, coral reefs are significantly damaged and in line killing a large percentage of aquatic life (Gurran, Norman, and Hamin, 2013).
Why there Should be a Consideration for Tourism Plan/Policy
The tourism industry is one biggest Australian export which in line contributes an enormous annual income in revenue generation. The objective of the policies will not be primarily focused on enhancing the tourism customer population but to also inject every possible expenditure in developing and sustaining a diverse scope of Australia tourism product. One of the main approaches that have been continuously applied over the years is the investment in marketing (Carlisle, Kunc, Jones, and Tiffin, 2013). Through this, the wide picture of tourism can be considered to have been neglected and on the other hand creating a more hostile environment that makes it impossible for tourism to thrive. With the decline of tourism capability, the economy of the country will be significantly affected in various industries sectors making it a part of one of the biggest supporters of the Australia economy. This will be characterized by the collapse of various industries such as hotels, transportation, businesses, and others. On the same note, with the decline of the tourism sector, more than 40% of Australia workers will be at the edge of losing their jobs (MacCallum, 2016).
Despite climate change being one of the majorly discussed topics in the world, Australia is one of the majorly affected countries in the world. According to CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology, Australia will be one of the affected countries in the world with the rise of temperature to above 5.1C by the end of the century. With the rate of land clearing, not only is the tourism industry in Australia threatened but also making Australia one of the hardest places on earth for any living thing to survive. With the increase of carbon gas being absorbed by the ocean, most of the major tourist attraction sites such as the Great Barrier Reef is expected to be extinct with time due to change of water’s PH level (Biggs, 2011). In relation to the current state of gas emission and poor handling capabilities by the government, the temperature is expected to be about 1.3C warmer by 2030. This means that by the year 2030 tourism industry will also be at the edge of collapsing with a drastic decline in plant and animal species (Amelung and Nicholls, 2014).
The Impact of Climate change on Australian Tourism
The growing development projects and population are factors to be considered for the implementation of a policy that will protect the environment from destruction. Queensland land clearing has been one of the controversial issues which have also been labeled as “inevitable” due to the growing development and urbanization pressure. The land clearing in Queensland is estimated to cause at least over 25 million animals annually which is a very huge population number to be lost annually in any tourism sector (Ham and Weiler, 2012). It is considered that the rate of land clearing in Queensland only is higher than entire Australia planting projects. With this, Queensland and entire Australia have certainly projected to lose its natural advantage and its entire cultural dynamics which is the major backbone pillar of the tourism industry. Culture aspect is one of the main factors that differentiate Australia from other tourism competitors. With changing practices and lack of necessary approaches to maintaining the indigenous culture, Australia is projected to lose an idle part of its tourism product diversification and majorly its competitive advantage in the global market (Lamont and Buultjens, 2011).
The government can be considered as one of the key players in the planning and implementation of successful policies. The government must be accountable for the sustenance of the entire tourism sector and any environmental protection. One of the key roles of the government would be to re-establish the restriction policies for the control of greenhouse gasses emission which has become a key issue in Australia (Bramwell and Lane, 2011). Another major role of the government is the protection of the tourist sites from external economic contamination. The development and sustainability of tourism products will also require the government to make a significant resource injection for research and other activities (Moutinho, 2011).
The community and tourism relationship is one of the main complexities in the tourism industry. With the growing demand for development projects and improved living standards, the society must also consider the need for natural balance and approaches that will encourage sustainable tourism development. The community must be able to learn safer means of conducting their day-to-day activities with the consideration of the impact to the environment (Harvey Lemelin et al., 2013). Example, despite most of the carbon dioxide, is emitted from burning fossils, the society is a major player in the total outcome of the situation which can also be considerably minimized or totally eliminated. With this in mind, the community must learn and be able to create methods that will maintain the heritage of Australia with as minimal contamination from the outside world as possible. Through this, the community must consider the anticipated tourist ideas which might influence the cultural practice (Athanasopoulos, Deng, Li, and Song, 2014).
Corporate Social Responsibility is one of many requirements for businesses which makes sure that they contribute to the economic development. This can be considered as the same factor approach in the tourism development and sustainability in Australia. Through some of the business events, marketing campaigns, and trade events, corporates have the responsibility of enhancing Australia tourism growth (Hall, 2008). Companies and businesses should able to educate their workers on their social responsibility role in the conservation of the environment and sustainable climate changes. On the same notes, businesses and industries should play a front role in the minimization of carbon emission by applying a more ‘green’ operation process (Australia, 2008). Like in the government, it’s a role of the businesses and industries to also inject more resources for tourism product development and sustainability.
Technological and Industry Revolution and its Effect on Australia Tourism
One of the main approaches is the reinforcement of tourism products and environmental protection. Many of the continuous destruction can be directly linked with daily human activities which choose to be ignored because of their income contribution. Example, the Great Barrier Reef is one of the majorly visited sites with multiple activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, and others (Harvey Lemelin et al., 2013). All these activities have directly or indirectly contributed to the physical destruction of the reefs. My policy proposal is to review the already in place policy acts and determine the weaknesses that have led to any effort being noticed in control measures. The policy Acts should create a series of guidelines, restrictions, and considerable fines for any outstanding destructions. In the case of deforestation, State and Federal governments must develop measures for the protected natural resources which include specific identification and conservation of every available species in Australia. Every stakeholder involved must account each of the action in social responsibility which includes activities such as random and planned tree planting in order to recover most of the lost forest cover.
On the main of the approach of tourism and product development, the government should implement a “boosting” policy and/or plan. The idea of this plan will be to provide any required resources for the maintenance of growth and sustainability in the tourism industry. The tourism industry is considered to provide an enormous amount of revenue annually and thus; the government should be able to inject back 40% of the total income at the current time. With the availability of the resources, there will be a significant improvement in the community living standards and also sustenance of tourism products. Economists argue that with the improvement of community living standards and quality of life, there will be also a significant improvement in the tourism industry with an increasing amount tourists are willing to spend (Whitford and Ruhanen, 2010). The policy should also highly emphasize on research development which will be able to integrate tourism product in Australia. With this in mind, there should be a research and development team with a mandate of ensuring there is an increase of the development plan and continuous increase in species regeneration.
Culture is one of the main features that offers Australia important competitive advantage against most of its competitors (Theobald, 2012). Through this, Culture conservation is another main factor that should focus on the development and sustainability of the tourism industry in Australia. The cultural centers can be considered as one of the main plans for the conservation of indigenous culture of Australia. The centers should also be able to receive resource funding as a significant approach to maintaining the cultural dynamics of the country. The policy of public education is another driving factor that should be emphasized in the approach to increasing domestic tourism.
In summary, tourism product development and diversity sustainability are one main factor that should mainly be considered in the saving the future prospects of tourism in Australia. In general, the main approach of the development plan can be characterized as the potential involvement of major stakeholders. Some of the basic policy implementations include the rehabilitation of the lost forest covers through deforestation. In order to make sure the approach is a complete success, the government must improvise restrictions that protect the environment against irresponsible land clearing. Also, since most of the major development projects are undertaken by the government, the policy should be able to protect the environment against any human economic activities which might endanger the ecological balance of Australia.
Through the increasing threat of climate change and gas emission, every stakeholder must play a significant role in creating sustainable tourism development. Incentives such as public education will play a vital role in educating the society about their role in environment sustainability (Bramwell and Lane, 2011). On the other hand, the States and Federal government must declare protection against some of the endangered species and features as sanctuaries, to be protected at all cost against contamination from other economic ventures and businesses.
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