In a study released by Griffin University in Australia, ecotourism is often the reason between a species going extinct or remaining protected. The study showed how ecotourism benefited different threatened species, showing that revenue from tourism had increased and buoyed the success of wildlife programs in local communities.
Ecotourism allows people to learn about different places, cultures, traditions, and ecosystems that they normally wouldn’t come across in their everyday lives. There is a sense of getting back to humanity or enjoying an adventure when ecotourists plan their trips.
For local communities, ecotourism can provide a myriad of benefits, ranging from economical advantages to employment. However, there are some unscrupulous individuals who have sought to profit off of ecotourism in disreputable ways. For those who want an ecotourism vacation, it’s important to look at reputable websites and find genuine opportunities to explore.
How Ecotourism Helps the Environment
In some cases, natural habitats can be forgotten and left to wither. However, when a new ecotourism spot opens up, many communities see instant benefits to preserving their natural surroundings. Forests, minerals, lakes, and land can be protected just because of a flux of ecotourists to an area.
This is an important step for communities that are taken over by corporations looking to take away these resources. Ecotourism can provide funding and protection for beautiful landscapes. Local communities and governments can build up these areas without harming the environment, as that is the main reason why ecotourists choose to go there. Local wildlife can thrive, and visitors will enjoy the untouched nature of these areas.
In addition, communities often need to pay more attention to waste management, renewable energy, energy efficiency,and recycling. These sustainable processes allow them to maintain their lands without the use of nuclear power plants and petrol.
Economic Results of Ecotourism
Ecotourism provides a lot of jobs in local areas as well. Whether it is a national guard who looks after the endangered area or a local guide, there are all kinds of jobs that are created through ecotourism. For those who work at ecotourism sites, it gives them other opportunities, such as training.
They can transfer to other areas and learn about nutrition, as well as receive meals at work. The surplus of income from ecotourism can drive communities into good fortune and help with small businesses, as well as cleaning up parts of the community that have become dilapidated due to the lack of funding.
Ecotourism companies often partner up with local charity groups and communities in order to give back. They may offer training, food, and certain goods to these communities so that they are in a better position.
Teaching Ecotourism to New Travelers
Travelers feel a personal connection to the ecotourism locations that they choose. They may pick a location because it involves their heritage, or perhaps it’s somewhere on the map that they have never been. Curiosity drives travelers to seek out these experiences, and they often come away with some form of enlightenment. There is something about seeing animals in their native habitat and learning about their struggle that makes people more aware of the world and their place within it.
Sometimes these changes manifest into people wanting a sustainable life when they go home. In other cases, they weave in aspects of their trip and the culture into their life, providing more insight to others who may not know.
Ecotourism can provide travelers with a need to teach and help others as well. They may see it as important to support other communities or even create an organization dedicated to helping those in need. Many travelers share their stories, and that also creates a need for others to go on the same journey.
Social Media and the Visibility of Environmental Protection
It can be difficult for impoverished communities to protect their lands. While ecotourism inherently places emphasis on protecting these lands, it does take time to set up these programs and get funding in place. With the increase of ecotourism, more communities are seeing the benefits of having their own areas to explore, and they are quickly mobilizing to protect those lands. These efforts often gain big coverage on social media, where they are easily shared.
The rapid increase in visibility has allowed many communities to speed up the process of protecting their lands. They are able to gain exposure on different channels and bring in people who want to help them. Ecotourism certainly helps with this exposure because people see others getting involved and want to share that information with the rest of the world.
There are online platforms in place to help ecotourism thrive, such as petitions and Kickstarters, that put a spotlight on issues of endangered species, loss of wildlife, or the destruction of forests. These issues become harder to ignore, and when combined with a non-profit organization, it can be as easy as flipping a switch and seeing ecotourist interest.
There are some things about ecotourism that don’t always help the community as it can lead to the threat of indigenous life. In these cases, communities have to establish clear barriers to ensure that traditional practices and cultures are preserved. When done the right away, ecotourism can support tradition and cultural expression while also benefiting the community at large.