The Effects of Tourism on the Environment

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Nearly everyone on the planet would love to see animals and wildlife in their natural habitat with plenty of the space and the resources they need to survive on their own. The problem is that this level of nature conservation is expensive. Leaving land free from development comes at a price. One solution to the expense of providing animals with protected areas is to use tourism as a way to fund the existence of the park. The advantages of this approach to nature conservation are that the protected area becomes affordable, if not profitable, and therefore the long term survival of the protected area is more assured. It also allows humans to interact with wildlife and see these animals in their natural habitats. This kind of exposure can lead to a lifelong appreciation for the importance of nature. The drawback to this approach to developing protected areas is that the human impact because of the tourism has a serious environmental impact. A look at several international examples will demonstrate how the balance between the advantages of using tourism to fund conservation and the disadvantages is a delicate and precarious balance. Recent moves towards sustainable tourism may offer the solution that both tourist and environmentalist are l

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