Why is mass coastal tourism a problem? What damage does it do? What are the alternatives?
What is sustainable tourism, and how can we achieve it?
How can Systems Thinking help to understand and inform our choices?
Since the 1950s, there has been a huge increase in the numbers of tourists seeking a seaside holiday. Over 500 million tourist arrivals in the Mediterranean are expected by 2030. Over time, many beach resorts become over-crowded and eventually lose their original natural attractiveness.
Effects can include:
Mass coastal tourism development consumes ever more of the coastline. For example, 43% of the Italian coastline is now completely urbanised.
Yet, managed properly, coastal tourism can actively preserve the local environment, provide long-term jobs and an economic boost to coastal communities, and a valuable service to holidaymakers.
The Human-Ocean System is a complex system. Systems Thinking provides major insights for tackling complex, practical problems like these.