Impacts of Tourism
On the Environment

Apparently, by the number of times we get asked about this one, this is a very popular essay or assignment question. It's also one about which we don't know very much, and care only slightly more. So here's a few ideas, and links to resources to help you find the answer.

National Parks in England and Wales - an example of conflict managed

National Parks are often cited as examples of how tourism and the environment can be managed together. National ParkAn estimated 110 million people visit the national parks of England and Wales each year. Recreation and tourism bring visitors and funds into the parks, to sustain their conservation efforts and support the local population through jobs and businesses. These visitors also bring problems, such as erosion and traffic congestion, and conflicts over the use of the parks' resources. The national funding offered to National Park Authorities is partly in recognition of the extra difficulties created in dealing with these conflicts.

Each park is operated by its own National Park Authority, with two 'statutory purposes'.

1. to conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area, and
2. to promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of the park's special qualities by the public.

These purposes can conflict: in such cases, under the 'Sandford Principle', conservation normally comes first. This principle was given statutory force by section 62 of the Environment Act 1995. In pursuing these purposes, National Park Authorities also have a duty to foster the social and economic well-being of their local communities.

Links to further information