An evaluation of the relationship between adventure tourism and environmental sustainability
LE3 .A278 2016
Master of Arts
Environment & Sustainability Studies
Environmental & Sustainability Studies
Adventure tourism, a subset of the tourism industry, is a sector that has experienced an increasing rate of growth in recent years. As a result, adventure tourism operations have increased their rate of development and growth to meet this high consumer demand. Consequently, environmental degradation associated with adventure tourism has increased simultaneously. Adventure tourism operations have been shown to negatively impact the environment in various ways including: contribution to climate change and high-energy usage; high water usage; deforestation and habitat degradation; and waste production. However, there have also been cases of adventure tourism contributing to impact mitigation and the overall promotion of environmental sustainability through the development of environmental management plans and environmental education programs. The purpose of this thesis was to evaluate the relationship between adventure tourism and environmental sustainability, and to use this understanding to shed light on how the industry and individual operations can work towards environmental sustainability. In order to evaluate this relationship, qualitative research was utilized in the form of semi-structured interviews with adventure tourism professionals in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada’s leading destination for adventure tourism activities.
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