Ecotourism, Economics and the Environment

With growing interest in conservation and growing incomes, nature-based tourism has grown rapidly. However, there are some differences in views about what constitutes nature-based tourism or ecotourism and these are briefly discussed. Then some estimates of the economic value of ecotourism are given and possible socio-economic benefits of it are listed. But these benefits are not certain, e.g., in some cases, there are considerable economic 'leakages' from expenditure by tourists and the local community gains little; self-financing of protected areas relying on proceeds from ecotourism is not always possible. Furthermore ecotourism business enterprises often have to operate under severe economic constraints (some are specified) which may prevent them from being economically viable. Again ecotourism is not without environmental impacts and management of it in protected areas is needed to limit these impacts. In addition, • it is noted that other industries can have adverse impacts on environments used for ecotourism. Because of the above issues, there is a need to plan tourism development systematically in protected areas and steps which may be taken in that regard are outlined. While some natural or protected areas are very suitable for the development of ecotourism, other areas are .not at all suitable and a checklist is provided to enable park managers to decide. the suitability of a particular area for ecotourism.

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Publication Type:
Working or Discussion Paper
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ISSN: 1321 6619 (Other)
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Series Statement:
Biodiversity Conservation: Studies in its Economics and Management, Mainly in Yunnan, China

 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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