Impacts of Tourism

Turistic development. Environmental cost. Sustainable tourism

  • Enviado por: Sak
  • Idioma: inglés
  • País: España España
  • 16 páginas
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1. General Vision of the present situation

In 1999 more than 657 millions of people travel out of them frontiers in tourism travels. Based in the data of the Mundial organisation of tourism (MOT) the incomes were 449 billions of us dollars. The tourism employs more than 255 millions of workers in the whole world. (One of each nine workers). For the year 2010 the MOT hopes that will reach one zousand million of internationals tourists, and incomes of 1550 billions of us dollars.

In 1999 France was the most visited destiny (70 million tourists), followed by Spain (51 million) and the United States country that registry the highest income by international tourism.

The tourism is a very fragile business and events as the attacks of 11-S can damage the turistic season practically stopping the trips, or in the beach tourism especially in the Mediterranean, the climate conditions, condition the number of visits. In some case the politic or economic instability (as in the case of Argentina) they can ruin the turistic industry in spite of being this of great tradition and quality

The tourism has positive effects, but also negatives. In the positives is the creation of employment the increase in the economic levels the positive effect for the new inversions in the conservation of natural spaces, avoids the migration of the local population, and improves the economic and socio-cultural level of the local population. the commercialisation of the locals products, interchange of ideas, costumes and the sesibilization of the tourist and local population for protection of the environment.

The tourism is one of the few intensive sectors of employment, is one of the few alternatives to the destruction of employs caused by the technological change, the globalisation process and the reduction of the working time.

In the negative effects, as important then the positives, is the rising of the consume of ground, water, energy, destruction of landscapes with the creations of news infrastructures, the raise in the production of disposals, the alteration of ecosystems, the introduction of exotic species of animals and plants, the lost of traditional habits, the raise of the prostitution (sexual tourism), the narcotic traffic, more forest fires and the raise of the prices of the houses.

The tourist flows contributes to the climate change, the acid rain, and the formation of the troposphere ozone, mainly because the transports of the tourist by air or by road are one of the principal sources of emissions of carbon dioxide and another contaminant gases.

The tourism affect to all type of ecosystems from the littoral destroyed by the walls of concrete, to the mountains were is settled the ski stations or, as the Alps, is invaded by zousands of hikers. The golf fields are today one of the mainly touristic attractions, with great impact due to the uses of pesticides, and the high consume of water. Regions traditionally arid as Andalucia in the south of Spain, inverts a lot of money in promotion of golf.

Hardly any place in the world doesn't have impact of the tourism, from the Antarctic were the impact is each time higher, to the Everest Mount polluted by hundreds of tons of remainders left by the multiple expeditions. None country and region wants to see itself private of the benefits of he tourism, except North Korea, Afghanistan, Sudan, and some other small country, and probably by few time. The tourism is one of the aspects of the globalisation, and probably the one with most repercussion.

Most of the promotions of the sustainable tourism, are only image operations, because the demolition of an obsolete hotel, or construction of a bicycle line, the selective collection of remainders or some equipment to save water and energy, or to wash less times the towels, did not avoid the serious unsustainable repercussions the tourism. In the first place by the motorised displacements and everything what it supposes from infrastructures (airports, freeways, parking, etc) to the emissions because of the fuel consumption. And secondly, by the repercussions in the arrival place, from the infrastructure of the lodging, to the water consumption, energy and other resources, noise, and contamination.

Most part of the tourism is unsustainable, and the most sustainable is the one that don't seem that it is. Zones as Benidorm, in the east of Spain (see fig 1), with the great concentration of hotels, and apartments and near half million of tourists in the month of August, in hardly 12 km of coast. Is much but sustainable that the same number of form tourists disperses (the call quality tourism) affecting tents of km of coast. Decided to destroy the coast at lees are destroyed better, and the high densities allow to reduce the displacements and to undertake the adequate investments in water purification and treatment of disposals. Although seems peculiar, the ecological is the skyscrapers (as higher as better) and the anti-ecological are chalets and the dispersed urbanisation with garden and individual swimming pool.

But untenable is tourism rural and of adventure with vehicles 4x4, which it degrades the zones that do not even are and with greater consumption of resources per capita, certain Eco-truisms distant countries, or even the tourism related to the hunting, specially in the African safaris, in which united a rich dentist of united state pays a great sum to hunt an elephant in Tanzania, that unfortunately is also another type of tourism

Most of the population of countries in vie of development does not even participate in the tourists flows, but it hopes that the things will change and will open new tourists markets in Asia and Latin-America for the new middle-classes.

2. Different kinds of tourism, different kinds of impacts.

Is clear that level of impact of depends on the class of tourism. One family that goes hiking a day to the Alps not make the same impact that a caravan of all terrain vehicles in the same place, or that a great hotel in Mediterranean. So we have to analyse the main types of tourism and their main effects to try to obtain the solutions for these problems.

  • Tourism of work or businesses: Hardly it has impacts except for consumes produced by the fuel of the aeroplanes.

  • Tourism of beach: The most common way of tourism and one of the most dangerous for the environment principally by the concentration of people in zones relativity small. it produces impacts by the high-operation of resources, the increase in the production of remainders, the increase in the prices of the houses, and another types of impacts that have been treated previously

  • Adventure tourism: maybe the worse one of all the tourism, usually it goes to unaltered zones, and quickly degrades by the discharge by the high consumption of resources to per capita, the problem bends if this takes control of all terrain vehicles, that used to go out of the paths

  • Rural tourism, or mountain tourism: They are small hotels in the middle of the field, its impacts are not very you seed because never they have many seats, are a form of tourism non massed, if it solves some problems approaches enough the sustainable tourism. This phenomenon is causing a change of the traditional flow country- city, to the opposite side. People are moving to rural areas that are far away from cities, and this is causing a re-organisation of the economic activity of the rural areas

  • Eco-tourism: It's supposed to be the sustainable tourism, is tourism non-massed, that it does not consume you seed amounts of resources, in which his users are consciences with the nature and tries to diminish the impacts.

  • Agrotourism is also related to sustainable tourism. It's a kind of tourism in which the tourist takes part of agricultural activities in farms, and places like this. The farmer welcomes guests, and he shows them his job (how to be in touch with the animals, the plants, the craft, etc.). This kind of tourism gives “life” to the rural area, and it proposes comforts in agreement with the habits of the area.

  • Other types of tourism: In this group use to put all the types of minority tourism, or seasonal, the impacts are very diverse depending on the type. Among others can be mentioned, the tourism of religious peregrination, the gastronomic tourism, the tourism of events, the cultural tourism, etc.

2.1 Common problems, independently of the type of tourism

  • Elevated use of natural resources, non-renewable in general.

  • Raw materials and combustibles (generally non local origin)

  • Water

  • Energy

  • Territory (before of agriculture and infrastructures is public sector that most territory consumes)

  • Generation of contamination

  • Residual Remainders

  • Residual waters and lost of quality of subterranean waters

  • Atmospheric pollution

  • Noise

  • Destruction of Biodiversity

  • Etc3. Sustainable tourism, but what is sustainable tourism?

The turistic development must be sustainable long term, economically viable and equitable. The tourism is a phenomenon of masses that responds to real necessities, by the increase of the level of rent and free time. The populations beneficiaries need sources use and income, because of that agree to channel and to regulate this phenomenon with the purpose of reduce its global repercussions (emissions by the transport) and the locals (lost of the Biodiversity, degradation of resources, etc) and to assure their sustainability.

The word “sustainable”, applied to tourism, has many definitions, but in short terms, means a kind of tourism that respects the environment. But sustainable tourism has some principles, that make more complicated this term. Now we will define these principles, to make an easier explanation:

  • Ecological sustainability: That means that tourism must respect the maintenance of the essential biological process, of the biological diversity, and of the biological resources.

  • Social and cultural sustainability: The development must respect the local culture, and the local population's values, as well as it must keep the community's identity.

  • Economic sustainability: The development must be economically efficient.

  • The economic sustainability maybe is the easiest goal, and until it does years everything was centered in obtain the greater economical rentability forgetting the social and economical aspects. Principally due to this has taken place greater disaster until now, including in this masificacion of the tourism, in some zones of the Mediterranean to little protection of some zones, ecologically unique. The social sustainability is more difficult to reach, since the population tends to adapt fast to the changes (single those that adapt survive) and loses the cultural identity quickly, or this like only turistic attraction is used. With respect to ace environmental sustainability, is the critical point because it tends to reduce the economic benefits and is necessary a previous awareness, on the importance of conservation of resources

    4 Costs of the tourism

    Since there is not a unique method for the analysis of the impacts of the tourism (in fact many methods exist being based on different criteria from measurement). For this study we go has to make a study of the economic costs, basing in economic indicators (because it seems to be more compressible and they do not need previous knowledge on ecology or socioly)

    Economic Cost:

    Most of the studies on the economic effects of the tourism they show the benefits generated by this industry. Fundamentally as far as the contribution of the sector to the balance. Of the balance of payments, to the impact on the income of the government and to the creation of use. These factors have been determining so that, considering to the tourism like panacea of the development, very few have taken care to analyze their negative effects. The negative economic impact has effect on local scale, are the destiny areas those that can be suffered economically when they depend on the tourism. Normally, the development of tourist goods and services reverts positively in any area, but when the tourism is not limited to appear as a form of diversification in the local economy, but that it totally supplants to the originating gains of the traditional activities. They open the economy to the instability, due to the changes in the tourist routes, the diminution of the publicity, the influence of tourist, “fashions” to the seasonal productive variation, etc. Before this situation, the small economies can decide on a dependency in the sector or can go towards their duality. In this case, they try to balance the two sources of income (traditional tourism and economic activities), obtaining one more a more rational operation of his possibilities. If that duality does not take place, frequent enough situation, the tourism can cause an inflationary tendency. This inflationary tendency takes place by the pressure that settle down on the ground and prices and taxes that directly affect the local population, without considering the previous uses and customs. That is to say, in the zones where the tourism becomes an institutionalized activity the inflation becomes patent in the disturbed ascent of the Earth, the goods, the food etc. For that directly they are involved in the tourist development the benefit is high, but not thus for the rest of the local population. Also it is important to consider that in the areas of tourist development the entrance of capitals and I interest financiers external lead to the loss of the local air traffic control on the activity, that grows very out of proportion and disarticulates the traditional productive sectors. When one is foreign capital the impact is not limited a local negative effect since it leaves from the benefits do not remain in the receiving country, takes place a loss of currencies. The generating tourism as of use also can have important economic costs. Although the correlation between the generation of income by the tourism is recognized and the use creation, the created positions, that as a whole reduce the figure of unemployment, is it on time partial or on time complete but unstable temporarily. There are authors who affirm that, in the long term, the low potential productivity of the work in the Tourist Company can have a depressive effect on the local economic growth. The entire exposed one previously can be transformed in:

    - Costs derived from the fluctuations of the tourist demand: a destiny let's have attractive for the visitors.

    • Possible inflation derived from the tourist activity: the buying capacity of the visitors is greater than the one of the resident population and this causes ascent of prices of the ground, feeding and services.

    • Loss of potential economic benefits: High dependency of foreign capital, flight of economic benefits.

    • Distortions of the local economy: Centralization of the economic activity in an only type of activity.

    • Impact on the work: The sector generates work unstable.

    Social cost:

    The social impact on the receiving areas of tourism, like any other aspect related to the sector, can have positive and negative effects. With respect to first, it is possible to emphasize the recovery and conservation of cultural values that, but for the attractiveness which it offers to the visitors, would be gotten to lose. It is the case of the preservation and historical monument rehabilitation and places, whose cost the small communities cannot do in front. Nevertheless, when one is a place of tourist interest destine special economic games for his attack. Of the same form, many of the local customs have been revitalized like part of the plans for the tourist supply (like tourist resources) In many places have seen appear again traditional customs that they were had lost: “folklore”, crafts, festivals, gastronomy, etc. One of the more important positive social aspects is the improvement in the facilities and services: sanitary attention, means of transport, parks, etc.

    But in spite of the undeniable social-cultural impulse that these positive aspects represent, it is not necessary to forget that a negative impact also exists. The first remarkable negative aspect is the social differences between local population and visitors. In certain destinies, mainly in those of the most underprivileged countries, the call developing countries, the residents get to become true servants of the tourists. This creates between the local population certain resentment towards the visitors and appears areas of social tension. Thus the tourism establishes the bases of a new form of colonialism based on the foreign currency dependency. As far as external workers occupy the jobs, the uses that they require greater qualification, being left the repaid works worse for the local population. As a result of the indicated socioeconomic differences it appears what more negative of the tourism can be considered like the social impact: the increase of prostitution, the game, the drugs, in general criminal aspects that never had arisen without the appearance of the visitors. Once again this circumstance is more frequent in the developing countries (Every day the tourist supply more is diversified. To the cultural tourism and of sun and beach, that in principle were most frequent, other alternatives are added such as the tourism of adventure, the one of businesses and congresses, the linguistic and educative tourism, tourism of thematic parks, etc. They are the sexual tourism and the one of drugs.) The tourism also can cause a des-culturization of the destiny. The local population like superior considers the culture of the tourists. Of this form the indigenous cultures try to adapt to the customs of the visitors and they are possible to be ended up destroying the elements that at their moment represented greater the attractiveness for the tourist.

    Environmental cost:

    The impact of the tourism in the environment is really the most negative aspect of the sector. Although in the last years one comes delivering an enormous attack to palliate his effects, the systematic damage that the tourism has caused in a great amount of areas are of very difficult recovery. The tourist activity, when becoming a massive phenomenon, requires great infrastructure and complexes services that not always have a suitable planning, and this has taken it to become a deteriorate constant of the natural and social environment. Non single it has transformed the physical aspect of the tourist zones, but that has generated serious upheavals ecological:

    • destruction of ecosystems,

    • diminution of the amount and quality of the water,

    • impoverishment and contamination of grounds,

    • extinction of multiple species of the fauna,

    • Severe affectation of the flora, fishing depredation and contamination of the sea.

    It has produced in addition phenomena to population and urban growth disordered and lack of services public, among others. Destruction of ecosystems: One of the greater threats for the ecosystems is the massive presence of visitors. Throughout many years, only considered at the time of exploding a zone for the tourism was the fast enrichment of the people involved in the sector. The tourism became an activity that sent crowds on the defenseless nature. In this context it is no wonder the gradual destruction of numerous ecosystems took place in many countries, but mainly in those considered tourist “paradises”. Diminution of the amount and the quality of the water: The arrival of tourists to many zones where the water is little has had a devastating effect in the reserves of this natural good. The causes have been several: the number of visitors, whom in many cases the amount, has exceeded to which really it is possible to be supplied in many zones. The rating of facilities with which water is wasted, as they are the golf courses or the fresh water swimming pools and the city-planning mastication, etc. All this gets to affect the agricultural development and the ecological balance of the zone.

    • The lack of water can favor, in addition, the desertization.

    • Impoverishment and contamination of grounds: A great amount of originating substances of the human activity exists that, added to the ground, changes their chemical properties and they make it unproductive. Some of these urban substances like sweeping remainders, used oils, etc. are related to the tourist activity. The solid remainders as much as liquid, can include a great variety of chemical substances, that frequently pierce the ground and they not only contaminate this one if not that also the underground water bodies contaminate. Of this form the grounds stop being productive.

    • Extinction of multiple species of the fauna: The performance of the tourism on the forest masses and the uncontrolled city-planning growth is, along with the hunting, the greater dangers for the fauna in many of the zones in which we found a diminution of species. In the sea, the wealth of fish is being seen seriously affected. In the Mediterranean, 60 % of residual waters still are spilled to the sea without a suitable treatment. The growth of the population in the coasts is impressive and to this growth it is necessary to add to him to the impact of the tourism and the second residences. Esteem that in high season in the Mediterranean will go of 135 million of 1990 up to 570 million in 2025. In order to avoid an ecological disaster in this zone of the world it is necessary to develop plans that go beyond the municipal expositions. Severe affectation of the flora: The massive presence of visitors in natural zones in the same way affects the flora that to the fauna. In some zones, the proliferation of sport activities (motorcycles, mountain bikes, vehicles all land, etc.) It causes serious problems of erosion of the ground that, inevitably, affects the flora.

    5. Solutions to medium and length term

    Once analyzed all the problems generate by the tourism, now we will try to find out if they are possible to be taken some measured to correct this situation and if the sustainable tourism can be reached. Or if the tourism by definition is an element with strong impact and this advocated to disaster and to the complete destruction

    The worldwide organism concienciated on this problem is the European union and is really the unique organism that this doing something to reach the sustainable tourism. The rest of the word does not consider those economic problems. Or he first must solve his economic problems (as in the case of African countries) or by simple carelessness (as in the case of the United States) although at global level there are strategies like the Summit of Rio or most recently the Johannesburg

    This clear one that first that they must take conscien from this and act they are the local communities, for it the EU through of its agenda 21 recommends to the local administrations:

  • Promote the local production and to offer ecological foods of the zone if possible and without chemical additives

  • Reduce and to diminish the production of remainders: to choose turnaround packages, to use recycled paper in you trusties pamphlets, to organize the separation of remainders in the origin, etc

  • Save water, to use technologies faucets would efficient, to use plants auctocton in the gardens, to inform to the tourist of the necessity to save water, etc (single for countries of the south of Europe)

  • Purify residual waters and to reuse them for the irrigation of grass or agriculture

  • Save energy: to use solar paddles to warm up renwables the sanitary water and energies (eolic, mini-hydraulic, photovoltaic). To decide on efficient washing machines and coolers, to watch the correct heat insulation and acoustic.

  • Construct of ecological and respectful way with environment and the landscape. To use materials deproduccion own, to adapt to the traditional architecture

  • To avoid deal of private vehicles. To promote the public transport and the use of bicycles (in countries as Nederlands is the most used transport). To foment pedestrian zones on the historic centers. To promote the local tourism, to reduce the aerial travels, and by produces less contaminant.

  • Respect the autochthon population. To facilitate the contact between the travelers and the receiving population, to avoid formation of turistic ghettos. To plan so that the tourism benefits all the local population.

  • Etc

  • 6.Conclusion

    This single work has tried to give one vision global of techniques the present situation and that can be used to correct this situation, although, in each concrete place must uses techniques or others since depending on the zone different problem's exist. Serve like example that serious stupid to put programs of water saving in UK. Respect to the tourism is due to plan on global scale and to act of local way.

    Therefore this single study gives the general directives, of the impacts of the tourism, but it does not enter in practices details of like acting in each zone. Luckily the situation can become but sustainable especially if the conservative spirit of the EU extends the rest of the world and obtains the famous sustainable tourism that it is not but part of always named sustainable development.

    7. Bibliography

    Pearce, D. Tourism Today. A geographical analisis .Longman 1997. (WWF in spanish) (web of the European Union) (school of tourism, University of Valence (Spain)) (scientific magacine)



    Study of the impacts of tourism