[Coral-List] Sustainable Tourism!?

Alessio Rovere alessiorovere at hotmail.com
Tue Dec 6 09:26:19 EST 2011

Hello, everyone. 

Speaking about diving tourism, can I suggest a work of mine on "marine natural heritage and accessibility" which could be of interest?

Rovere, A., Parravicini, V., Firpo, M., Morri, C. and Nike Bianchi, C. (2011), Combining geomorphologic, biological and accessibility values for marine natural heritage evaluation and conservation. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 21: 541–552. doi: 10.1002/aqc.1214

In particular, don't you agree that deep or difficultly accessible sites can benefit a sort of "self-protection" from diving tourism?


Alessio Rovere
PhD in Marine Environmental Sciences
Università degli Studi di Genova

SEAMap srl - Environmental Consultancy
Spin off dell'Università degli Studi di Genova
Via Greto di Cornigliano 6R, 16152, Genova
P.I. / C.F. 01995970991

Tel: +39 3803447800
Skype: alessio.rovere
Mail: alessiorovere at seamap.it (Work)
          alessiorovere at hotmail.com (Personal)

GEco - Geospatial Ecological Modelling 
selected by "Italia degli Innovatori 2011" 
(Italian Agency for Innovation)

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Il giorno 06/dic/2011, alle ore 08.30, feral ha scritto:

> I note the disproportionate efforts to organize a sustainable overcrowding
> of coral reefs. What would one not to transport the tourists? In the
> tropical countries in defence of coral reefs, tourism is always presented by
> economists as the real alternative to traditional fishing practices. With
> the coral tourism, urbanization is growing, changing natural habitats
> increases, land speculation gnaws the lagoons ... He is accompanied by
> excessive consumption of water and energy and infrastructure operations
> deadly for coral. 
> But as tourism does not directly killing the fish and is admiring the
> turtles, it is "virtuous." We moved into an unlimited recreational use of
> coral reefs.
> François Féral 
> -----Message d'origine-----
> De : coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> [mailto:coral-list-bounces at coral.aoml.noaa.gov] De la part de Monika Franck
> Envoyé : lundi 5 décembre 2011 18:11
> À : martin pecheux; coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Objet : Re: [Coral-List] Sustainable Tourism!?
> Dear Martin
> The water engine (HHO) car is another existing cleaner technology that
> could be used instead of burning fossil fuels. The electric car is not the
> only option of existing technology that does not burn polluting fossil
> fuels. 
> And yes of course, logic suggests that if electric cars are used instead of
> water engine cars, then electric cars should be charged using solar, wind or
> hydro-electric energy instead of electricity from power plants burning
> fossil fuels or nuclear energy. 
> My point was that various new cleaner energy technology options do exist,
> but they are being stopped by oil business and governments supporting oil
> business, so that they can keep making high profits from un-informed
> consumers while oil stocks last.
> It is more feasible that the oil business and governments supporting oil
> business are pressured to reform by energy consumers and scientists, and not
> the tourism industry by labelling it unsustainable due to flights high in
> emissions. Calling tourism unsustainable would be going after the red
> herring.
> The tourism industry is not guilty of stopping cleaner travel/energy
> technology from being made available; oil business and governments
> supporting oil business are the real sustainability barriers and should be
> stopped by energy consumers who are paying the high price, and having the
> "oil cloth" pulled over their eyes in this game.
> best wishes
> Monika
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: martin pecheux
> Sent: 12/02/11 02:07 AM
> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
> Subject: Re: [Coral-List] Sustainable Tourism!?
> Dear Monika, NO. Electric cars must use electricity, which is made in great
> majority in plant burning fossil fuel, so its the same pollution. Even
> worse, as it is often coal which emit more CO2 than oil for a given energy.
> I am even opposed to electric cars in country like France where 75% of
> electricity is nuclear, as their is important residual emission,
> fabrication, battery pollution, risk of exportation, only a transition.
> DON'T BE WRONG. We are facing the 6th mass extinction. Cheers, Dr. Martin
> Pecheux IPCC 2007, 2013 Institut des Foraminifères Symbiotiques 16, rue
> Lafontaine 92160 Antony, France martin.pecheux at free.fr +33 9 5324 3374 Le 1
> déc. 2011 à 17:58, Monika Franck a écrit : > Dear Jeurgen > > You make a
> good valid point in that most tourism is unsustainable. However
> sustainability certification of coral reef destinations/exploiters (dive
> operators/hotels/sports fishing etc) could go a long way in changing that,
> as public/divers etc. become more "sustainabil!
> ity aware", they have the power to
> influence impacts through consumer choices and turning the market towards
> sustainability. Taking this direction and harnassing the power of informed
> individual consumer choice has great untapped potential in motivating
> sustainable use of natural resources. > > Flying long distances to
> "pristine" holiday destinations does little for sustainable use of natural
> resources, but it can not be held against tourism alone. Successful
> alternative technology besides burning fossil fuels exists; like the
> electric car and the water (HHO) engine. However these excellent
> technologies have been subdued and kept quiet to enable oil corporations and
> governments too continue making big profits from consumers via old polluting
> energy and fuel technology. Patents for electric cars have been bought up by
> wealthy oil corporations and destroyed to enable oil business to continue
> making high profits from oil. There is an entire award winning documentary
> film on this : http://www.whokilledtheelectri!
> ccar.com/ > > Here is a police sta
> tion converting their vehicles to a hybrid water engine to save fuel
> consumption:http://youtu.be/MUgUF5M3FTI This water engine technology given
> some political will could also be placed in aeroplanes and make a huge
> contribution toward less polluting global air travel. > > Non-pulluting
> energy/fuel technology is there why are people not using it? Why are
> inventors not given the funding to launch their excellent pollution free
> technology? Because it's in direct conflict with the huge profits oil
> corporations make. There is more dirty money and effort behind stopping new
> non-polluting technology in its tracks, than there is money and support
> backing clean and low cost energy technology to launch into public consumer
> use. > > Many third world countries live off tourism, or it makes up a large
> part of their GNP. Thus discouraging tourists from flying long distances to
> support them is also not much of a fair solution, but addressing old
> polluting fossil fuel burning technology whi!
> ch hampers travelling sustainably 
> sounds more feasible, especially since these technologies already exist but
> are being subdued by wealthy oil corporations chasing profits. > > Sure
> coral reef ecosystems should not just be preserved for divers who want to
> see more fish or bigger fish on dives, it belongs just as much to local
> communities and fishermen who fish it for a living, and they should be
> compensated (receive a cut of the diver/tourist fee for not fishing a
> protected area if this is the case). Raising awareness with and compensating
> local fishermen or marine resource harvesters for not fishing a protected
> area would go a long way in helping communities to support sustainability
> efforts too. There are many sustainability stakeholders not just the
> diving/tourism industry. > > There is some evidence and work in this
> direction to prove that protecting coral reef and its associated habitats
> (mangroves, seagrass beds and estuaries) from fishing provides benefits for
> fishers, because as fish/marine life are !
> allowed to breed up, they spill ov
> er and move to unprotected areas where fishers and other exploiters benefit
> from protected areas too. If you want evidence of this look at the vessel
> tracking logs of fishing fleets operating near protected areas where fishing
> is excluded, you will find fishermen tend to fish along the borders of the
> protected area as they are catching more fish there (I call that a benefit).
> See also /Benefits Beyond Boundaries/ by Gell and Roberts 2003:
> www.panda.org/downloads/marine/benefitsbeyondbound2003.pdf There are other
> papers on this subject to support that protecting appropriate marine areas
> from human activity such as fishing/harvesting marine resources has benefits
> for all users. > > Needed is an internationally recognised
> indicator/certification system, similar to the 5 star status system of
> hotels, to enable consumers of coral reef destinations to make informed
> choices: e.g. pick a hotel that has not cleared coral to create bathing
> beach and uses solar panels to supplement ene!
> rgy use, over a hotel that only ru
> ns generator, and pick dive operators that actively contribute to their
> sustainable dive sites. > > Something simple at the user interface, so that
> when a diver/tourist looks at a dive/holiday destination on a travel agent's
> website; - tourists/divers can at a glance deduce whether it is a
> sustainable destination through the certification status destinations have
> been rated with, through internationally agreed scientific, philosophical
> and the methodological means necessary. > > If a users/consumers don't know
> how to tell the difference, or how they are impacting destinations; - they
> can hardly be expected to make a difference through their actions toward
> sustainable tourism or consumerism can they? > > best wishes > Monika > >
> ----- Original Message ----- > From: Juergen Herler > Sent: 11/27/11 05:05
> PM > To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov > Subject: [Coral-List] Sustainable
> tourism!? > > Dear listers! I really like some of the ideas, especially that
> well-managed coral reef!
>  destinations should be certified 
> and financially rewarded by visitors. However, the main problem why I
> believe that tourism cannot contribute much for sustaining ecosystems in
> general is that tourism in itself is highly unsustainable. If you fly across
> half the world to spent one or two nice weeks in one of the luxury resorts
> of the Maldives, which takes an enormous amount of gasoline every day to be
> run in a comfortable way, how can that ever save their coral reefs in the
> long term and not do major damage to these and other ecosystems in the
> world? It of course would be great if tourism would become more 'eco' (based
> for example on some of the good suggestions in previous posts) but in terms
> of energy consumption, there is no such thing as 'eco'-tourism. Sustainable
> holidays will unfortunately only be the ones that are spent in the own
> garden. But since people will certainly not accept t! > hat, it is of course
> good if they > prefer short- versus long-distance trips and destinations,
> which perform good con!
> servation and are highly efficient
> in terms of water and energy consumption, but such destinations are usually
> expensive and restricted to the more wealthy people, which do not represent
> the majority of tourists. I have been doing research in the Red Sea of Egypt
> for more than seven years and this country has experienced a tremendous
> tourism boom, especially along the Red Sea coast, but unfortunately they
> receive many tourists which carry little money to Egypt and do not care much
> about corals reefs at all. The great majority are even not divers and do not
> like corals (because it hurts when they step on them during swimming). I
> also doubt that it is is a very humane approach that we preserve ecosystems
> (especially those of third world countries) because wealthy people from
> other countries - who can afford to travel there - would like to see them
> untouched. Very often you meet tourists who wish t! > hat, for example,
> fishing is banne > d from reefs so that they can see more fish while diving,
> but this fish ve!
> ry often feeds the local people (a
> lthough they very often also do not fish sustainably). This all may apply
> less to destinations (just for example) like the Caribbean, when visited by
> US-tourists from the southern USA or to the Great Barrier Reef, visited by
> eastern Australians, but what I want to say is that it is just not correct
> to tell people that they do something good for an ecosystem if they travel a
> long distance to see it, instead of not visiting it, at least as long as
> tourism is run the way as it currently is (usually starting in pristine
> areas and degrading those areas quickly). I know this is a dilemma, but
> Ulf’s suggestion of a sustainability index could be applied to holiday trips
> also, and tax the travel and service providers according to that would be a
> necessary thing. So people could not easily shift to cheaper and
> unsustainable travels or destinations (and there are far too many o! > f
> those in the world), if the sust > ainable ones become even more expensive
> (and some of the previous s!
> uggestions would of course cause t
> hat). People with less money would probably have to make shorter-distance
> trips and stay there longer, which for sure would still enable nice
> holidays. Today, people are 'fined' if they decide for more sustainable
> holidays. From my point of view, this cannot be the right approach. Best
> wishes Juergen -- <°))))>< Dr. Juergen Herler Faculty of Life Sciences
> University of Vienna Althanstraße 14 A-1090 Vienna/Austria/Europe e-mail:
> Juergen.Herler at univie.ac.at http://homepage.univie.ac.at/juergen.herler
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