Tourism and Sustainable Coral Reefs

Tourism And Sustainable Coral Reefs
October 5 2009
Global Coral Reef Alliance White Paper

Thomas J. Goreau abc*
a President, Global Coral Reef Alliance, Cambridge, MA, USA
b Scientific Advisor, Yayasan Karang Lestari, Pemuteran, Bali, Indonesia
c Scientific Advisor, Gili Eco Trust, Gili Trawangan, Lombok, Indonesia

*Email: goreau@bestweb.net

ABSTRACT
Environmentally unsustainable tourism has been a major, although localized, contributor to coral reef destruction and degradation, severely impacting ecotourism quality, beach sand supplies, protection of coastlines from erosion, fisheries, and marine biodiversity. Nevertheless, hotels and dive shops could readily apply modern coral reef restoration methods to grow back reefs, providing high quality ecotourism in front of Ray Ban outlet resorts, growing back sandy beaches naturally, restoring fisheries habitat, and preserving marine species from global warming extinction. A large-scale effort by the tourism industry is proposed to make tourism part of the solution, rather than part of the problem. National and international policies are needed to encourage this.

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