For a variety of reasons, host communities often are the weaker party in interactions with their guests and service providers. The impacts arise when tourism brings about changes in value systems and behaviour, thereby threatening indigenous identity.
Criteria[ edit ] Seal watching near Malusi Islands in Estonia. Ecotourism is tourism which is conducted responsibly to conserve the environment and sustain the well-being of local people. Builds environmental awareness Provides direct financial benefits for conservation Provides financial benefits and empowerment for local people Respects local culture conservation of biological diversity and cultural diversity through ecosystem protection promotion of sustainable use of biodiversity, by providing jobs to local populations sharing of all socio-economic benefits with local communities and indigenous peoples by having their informed consent and participation in the management of ecotourism enterprises tourism to unspoiled natural resources, with minimal impact on the environment being a primary concern.
For many countries, ecotourism is not simply a marginal activity to finance protection of the environmentbut a major industry of the national economy. For example, in Costa RicaEcuadorNepalKenya, Madagascar and territories such as Antarcticaecotourism represents a significant portion of the gross domestic product and economic activity.
Self-proclaimed practitioners and hosts of ecotourism experiences assume it is achieved by simply creating destinations in natural areas. According to critics of this commonplace and assumptive practice, true ecotourism must, above all, sensitize people to the beauty and the fragility of nature.
These critics condemn some operators as greenwashing their operations: According to the Oxford English Dictionaryecotour was first recorded in and ecotourism, "probably after ecotour", in A tour of or visit to an area of ecological interest, usually with an educational element; in later use also a similar tour or visit designed to have as little detrimental effect on the ecology as possible or undertaken with the specific aim of helping conservation efforts.
Tourism to areas of ecological interest typically exotic and often threatened natural environmentsesp. One source claims the terms were used earlier. The failure to acknowledge responsible, low-impact ecotourism puts legitimate ecotourism companies at a competitive disadvantage.
Many environmentalists have argued for a global standard of accreditation, differentiating ecotourism companies based on their level of environmental commitment, creating a standard to follow. A national or international regulatory board would enforce accreditation procedures, with representation from various groups including governments, hotels, tour operators, travel agents, guides, airlines, local authorities, conservation organizations, and non-governmental organizations.
Crinion suggests a Green Stars System, based on criteria including a management plan, benefit for the local community, small group interaction, education value and staff training. Environmental impact assessments could also be used as a form of accreditation.
Feasibility is evaluated from a scientific basis, and recommendations could be made to optimally plan infrastructure, set tourist capacity, and manage the ecology. This form of accreditation is more sensitive to site specific conditions. Some countries have their own certification programs for ecotourism.
Costa Rica, for example, runs the Certification of Sustainable Tourism CST program, which is intended to balance the effect that business has on the local environment. The CST program focuses on a company's interaction with natural and cultural resources, the improvement of quality of life within local communities, and the economic contribution to other programs of national development.
CST uses a rating system that categorizes a company based upon how sustainable its operations are. Based upon these criteria, the company is evaluated for the strength of its sustainability.
Despite its positive socio-economic impacts, the industry is beginning to have negative environmental impacts in the area such as the destruction of the area's ecology through driving outside the prescribed trails, noise pollution and poor waste management. Sociocultural impacts of tourism An inherent aspect of tourism is the seeking of authenticity, the desire to experience a different cultural setting in its natural environment.   Although cultural tourism provides opportunities for understanding and education, there are serious impacts that arise as a result. Expressed simply, sustainable tourism can be defined as: "Tourism that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities".
The measurement index goes from 0 to 5, with 0 being the worst and 5 being the best. More initiatives should be carried out to improve their awareness, sensitize them to environmental issues, and care about the places they visit. With the confidence of ecotourists and intimate knowledge of the environment, tour guides can actively discuss conservation issues.
Informing ecotourists about how their actions on the trip can negatively impact their environment and the local people.
A tour guide training program in Costa Rica's Tortuguero National Park has helped mitigate negative environmental impacts by providing information and regulating tourists on the parks' beaches used by nesting endangered sea turtles. These corporations finance and profit from the development of large scale ecotourism that causes excessive environmental degradation, loss of traditional culture and way of life, and exploitation of local labor.
In Zimbabwe and Nepal's Annapurna region, where underdevelopment is taking place, more than 90 percent of ecotourism revenues are expatriated to the parent countries, and less than 5 percent go into local communities. Local peoples have a vested interest in the well-being of their community, and are therefore more accountable to environmental protection than multinational corporations, though they receive very little of the profits.
The lack of control, westernization, adverse impacts to the environment, loss of culture and traditions outweigh the benefits of establishing large scale ecotourism.
The increased contributions of communities to locally managed ecotourism create viable economic opportunities, including high-level management positions, and reduce environmental issues associated with poverty and unemployment.Tourism carrying capacity is a now antiquated approach to managing visitors in protected areas and national parks which evolved out of the fields of range, habitat and wildlife management.
In these fields, managers attempted to determine the largest population of a particular species that could be supported by a habitat over a long period of time. Negative Socio-Cultural Impacts From Tourism. The attitude of local residents towards tourism development may unfold through the stages of euphoria, where visitors are very welcome, through apathy, irritation and potentially antagonism, when anti-tourist attitudes begin growing among local people.
Partly due to the above impacts. Despite its positive socio-economic impacts, the industry is beginning to have negative environmental impacts in the area such as the destruction of the area's ecology through driving outside the prescribed trails, noise pollution and poor waste management.
The socio-cultural impacts of tourism are basically the consequences of either the development of the tourism industry or the presence of the tourists (and the characteristics of the tourist-host relationship) (Sharpley ).
Annual review of activities Greg Richards. The ATLAS Cultural Tourism Group has been conducting research and organising special interest meetings on the relationship between culture and tourism since , and therefore is the longest-standing ATLAS research group.
The socio-cultural impacts of conventional tourism described here, are the effects on host communities of direct and indirect relations with tourists and of interaction with the tourism industry.