carrying capacity

William Allison beliamall at
Sun Feb 9 20:50:32 EST 2003

Bearing in mind that procedures and
standards vary considerably among
operations, at several  locations I survey
diver-caused direct physical damage is trivial .
Supervised divers are kept away from  the
substrate and cause little  damage. Unsupervised
divers probably cause most of the damage.
Considering supervision at a more general
level I suspect that owned  reefs (resorts)
sustain less damage than common property
reefs. By way of example, some of the worst
behaved divers I have seen have been from
live-aboard boats (little direct supervision,
situation). Decisions about supervision
and degree of access are management tools
in Jamie Spurgeon's classification.

Snorkelers cause more damage than divers.
In general they are unsupervised and have
no training about either the biota or

Overall, carrying capacity based on diver
damage seems to be a minor issue.
Much more important seems to be the
damage done in the course of constructing
and operating the diving tourism infrastructure.


William (Bill) Allison
Atoll Science
Rangas, Violet Magu
(960) 329667
beliamall at

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