Presentation on theme: "Sustainability and Ecotourism Case Study: Costa Rica."— Presentation transcript:
Sustainability and Ecotourism Case Study: Costa Rica
Something Different: Sustainable Tourism It’s difficult to think of a tourist destination not harming the environment in some way There are airports, hotels, roads, pollution from cars, and additional human waste that are just some of the negative effects of tourism
St Petersburg, Florida High rise condos on the beach designed for tourists Effects from this are so severe that they may be permanent
Alternative Tourism: Sustainable Tourism: provides travellers with experiences that have as little impact on the natural environment as possible. “tourism development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of future generations of tourists” – World Commission on the Environment and Development
The aim of sustainable tourism is to provide a worthwhile experience while protecting nature and preserving the local culture
Large and Small It comes in large scale and small scale forms Large scale examples: rafting down the Ottawa River, fishing in Great Slave Lake, scuba diving in Australia etc Small scale examples: camping at a local river, hiking on the Niagara Escarpment or going bird watching in Florida
Both small and large must: To be sustainable there are 4 factors that must be met. It should protect the existing and future use of the environment It should respect the people and the culture of the local area It should allow for the long-term use of the area It should provide long term economic benefits to the people living in the tourist area
Types of Tourism (Remember the note we did on this?) These are on that list! Wilderness Tourism Adventure Tourism But we have one more to add to this….
Ecotourism Travelling to undisturbed areas and enjoying the scenery and its wild plants and animals Generates about $38 billion worldwide, a year, mostly in developing countries
Case Study: Costa Rica Ecotourism and Costa Rica have become to mean almost the same thing
Costa Rica http://www.youtube.com/user/ITravel200 0?v=mEUDfBmtB1c http://www.youtube.com/user/ITravel200 0?v=mEUDfBmtB1c
Costa Rica, a natural destination Since the 1980s, Costa Rica's national tourist board, the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo(ICT), has been promoting eco- tourism. Because Costa Rica could not compete with the beautiful beaches of the Caribbean or Mexico, the ICT decided to concentrate on Costa Rica as a “natural destination”--a wise choice, as approximately 25% of Costa Rican forests are preserved in some way (approximately 12% in national parks and reserves).
Seasonal tourism Another consideration of the ICT is that tourism in Costa Rica is seasonal. The high season for tourism includes the months of December, January, February, and March. Because of higher rainfall, the months of lowest tourism levels tend to be May, June, September, and October.
Tourism on the Osa Peninsula On the Osa Peninsula, tourism is on a much smaller scale. As the infrastructure of electricity and better roads develops in the Osa, so will tourism. Whether the tourism will be "sustainable" (providing for future generations) remains to be seen.
Foreigners reap the monetary benefits of tourism The World Bank estimates that 55% of the gross tourism income in underdeveloped countries goes to the developed countries. The exact figure of tourism income leaving Costa Rica is unknown; however it is assumed that because of the large number of foreign businesses in country and purchases of imported goods, the benefits of tourism to Costa Ricans are diminished.
The ICT is now promoting projects in which Costa Ricans themselves gain the economic benefits of tourism. One way to work toward this idea is to promote small scale, eco-friendly and sustainable lodge designs for tourists.
Foreign tourists pay for services received With the recent increase in national park entrance fees for foreigners, tourists now contribute to the maintenance and preservation of reserves. This fee relieves the Costa Rican government’s responsibility to fund the parks.
Some of this money is used to improve interpretive programs at the parks and reserves. Often tourists are uninformed when taking nature hikes. Tourists who participate in educational programs, such as slide shows and natural history walks, provided by the parks and private reserves or lodges are more likely to donate additional money for reserve maintenance, environmental education, and training programs for local guides.
Tourism affects communities Another area of consideration within the issue of eco-tourism is the effects the presences of tourists have upon a local community. Often locals are concerned that their family values and way of life will be changed by the influence of tourists.
With women working outside their homes, employed by the hotel/restaurant industry, family life changes. Social problems (delinquency, drug use, and prostitution) and crime have increased in some areas.