Climate change and tourism


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Climate change and tourism

  1. 1. Climate change and Tourism© Ramakrishna Kongalla,Assistant ProfessorRtist @ Tourism
  2. 2. • “Global Warming stops global roaming”• Daily Telegraph(Australian newspaper)• “The global warming scenario is pretty grim.Im not sure I like the idea of polar bearsunder a palm tree” - LennyRtist @ Tourism
  3. 3. • Tourism as an industry is increasing in both volume and economicimportance.• Several places, that only a few years ago were inaccessible, are nowbecoming very popular holiday destinations.• However, the ecosystems of many of these resorts are particularly vulnerableto climate change.• Global and regional temperatures are rising. Climate change is expected toincrease the risk of illness in several parts of the world and consequentlydiscourage tourism.• Climate models suggest a future warming of 0.2 - 0.3°C per decade and sealevels are expected to rise at a rate of 4 to 10cm per decade.Rtist @ Tourism
  4. 4. • The impacts of climate change on tourism are likely to manifestthemselves in a number of different ways according to localconditions.• Many of these impacts will develop indirectly throughincreased stresses placed on environmental systems.• The most serious impact of this will be sea level rise,deterioration of monuments, depletion of natural touristattractions, rise of temperature causing discomfort and lessersnow falls etc.• Global climate change is arguably the most seriousenvironmental issue of our time, and tourism is a potentialvictim of it.Rtist @ Tourism
  5. 5. Introduction• India emits the fifth most carbon of any country in the world. At253 million metric tons, only the U.S., China, Russia, and Japansurpassed its level of carbon emissions in 1998.• Carbon emissions have grown nine-fold over the past fortyyears. In this Industrial Age, with the ever-expandingconsumption of hydrocarbon fuels and the resultant increase incarbon dioxide emissions, the greenhouse gas concentrationshave reached levels causing climate change.• Going forward, carbon emissions are forecast to grow 3.2% perannum until 2020. To put this in perspective, carbon emissionslevels are estimated to increase by 3.9% for China and by 1.3%for the United States.Rtist @ Tourism
  6. 6. • India is a non-Annex I country under the United Nations FrameworkConvention on Green house gases and climate Change, and as such, isnot required to reduce its carbon emissions.• An historical summary of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossilfuel use in India is increasing rapidly and causes global warming.• All inhabitants of our planet have an equal right to the atmosphere,but the industrialized countries have greatly exceeded their fair, per-capita share of the planet’s atmospheric resources and have inducedclimate change.• The most developed countries possess the capital, technological andhuman resources required for successful adaptation, that isparticularly vulnerable to the changes in temperature, rainfall andextreme weather events associated with climate change.Rtist @ Tourism
  7. 7. • According to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Changeand the Kyoto Protocol , the most industrialized countries aremainly responsible for causing climate change.• The promoters of ‘adventure-’ or ‘ecotourism’ have popularizedslogans such as: “Go visit the last paradises… before they’ll bedestroyed by tourist hordes.”• The British daily The Observer recently suggested that worldtravellers need to hurry up if they want to see the ‘10 wondersof a vanishing world’.• We can no longer take the most wondrous natural touristattractions for granted due to global warmingRtist @ Tourism
  8. 8. Tourism world wakes up to the climate crisis• Climate is an essential resource for tourism, and especially for beach, natureand winter sport tourism, and the phenomenon of global warming alreadygravely affects the industry and an increasing number of destinations.• In 2003, the Madrid-based UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)convened the 1st International Conference on Climate Change and Tourism inDjerba, Tunisia, to help the travel and tourism industry to respond to theseissues.• The UNWTO, that only a few years ago became a special UN agency, istraditionally driven by a strong Business Council that aggressively advancesthe interests of the world’s most powerful tourism-related corporations.• That the UNWTO declared climate change a priority issue shows thegrowing awareness among industry leaders and policymakers that theimpacts of global warming pose a serious threat to tourism.Rtist @ Tourism
  9. 9. Aviation, cruise ship industry major climate change culprits• The aviation industry in particular is now facing enormous pressure sincethe Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and environmentalcampaign groups have singled out the responsibility of air travel inaccounting for a considerable portion of global greenhouse gas emissions.• Globally, the world’s 16,000 commercial jet planes generate more than 600million tones of CO2 per year, and India produces 10 million tones of CO2from all the sectors ranking 5th next to US, China, Russia, Japan.• The huge increase in aircraft pollution is largely due to the rapid growth oftourism and related air traffic.• A WWF (World Wildlife Fund ) briefing paper on ‘Tourism & ClimateChange’ (2001) states that the actual tonnage of CO2 emitted will increaseby over 75 per cent by 2015; concomitantly, from almost 700 millioninternational travelers in 2000, numbers are expected to jump over onebillion by 2010 and 1.6 billion by 2020.Rtist @ Tourism
  10. 10. • “As a consequence, the role of air travel within the tourismindustry is likely to expand, cause considerableenvironmental damage, and to have knock-on effects on thetourism industry itself,” concludes WWF.• The worldwide booming cruise ship industry has also comeunder fire.• Cruise ships that can carry up to 5,000 tourists are not onlynotorious for creating tremendous amounts of waste andsewage but also belong to the biggest contributors togreenhouse gas emissions within the travel and tourismindustry.Rtist @ Tourism
  11. 11. Projections of Climate Change for India• Indian projections, under future climate change scenario ofincrease Green House Gas(GHG) concentrations, indicatemarked increase in both rainfall and temperature into the 21stcentury, particularly becoming conspicuous after 2040’s.• Increase in GHG concentrations may lead to overall increase inthe rainy day intensity by 1-4 mm/day except for small areas innorthwest India where the rainfall intensities decrease by 1mm/day.Rtist @ Tourism
  12. 12. Forestry and Natural Ecosystems• The emerging results of analysis of impact of climatechange on forest biomes in India seem to be highlyvulnerable to the projected change in climate.• Majority of the vegetation in India is likely to be lessoptimally adapted to its existing location andconsequently vulnerable to the adverse climaticchanges.• Biodiversity is also likely to have adverse impact dueto this.Rtist @ Tourism
  13. 13. Human Health• According to Intergovernmental Panel on Climatechange (IPCC) in its 4th Assessment Report publishedin 2007, human begins are exposed to climate changethrough changing weather patterns– for example, more intense and frequent extreme events andindirectly through changes in water, air, food quality andquantity, ecosystems, agriculture and economy.• Increases in malnutrition and consequent disorders,with implications for child growth and developmentseems other effect on human beings.Rtist @ Tourism
  14. 14. • Particularly those with low adaptive capacity willsuffer in different ways.• Increase in deaths, disease and injury due to heatwaves, floods, storms, fires and droughts, theincreased burden of diarrheal disease, increasedfrequency of cardio-respiratory diseases due to higherconcentrations of ground level ozone related to climatechange and altered spatial distribution of someinfectious- disease vectors.• Malaria incidences are directly linked to the generationof vectors which are sensitive to temperature,precipitation and humidity conditions.Rtist @ Tourism
  15. 15. Infrastructure• Large infrastructure such as dams, roads, bridgesincurring high costs of construction are vulnerable toextreme events like cyclones, heavy rains, landslidesand floods, which may increase in the latter half of thecentury due to climate change.• The currently commissioned infrastructure havinglived its normal life span would be more vulnerable tothese recurrent eventsRtist @ Tourism
  16. 16. Coastal Zones in India• The holistic data of sea level reveals high variability along theIndian coast line with an increase along the Gulf of Kutch andWest Bengal line and decrease along Karnataka coast.• The observations indicate a long term average rising trend of1mm/year in sea level and a projection of rise in a sea level inthe range of 46-59 cm by the end of twenty first century.• The result of preliminary assessment indicates the vulnerabilityof Indian coast lines due to sea level rise, tectonic movement,and prevalent hydrographs and physiographic.Rtist @ Tourism
  17. 17. Effect of global warming on tourism• Rising temperatures fuelled by greenhouse gases from industry andagriculture have already shrunk glaciers on the mountains of thegreat Himalayas.• Receding glaciers are affecting the levels of water in rivers. Recent reportshave also brought out that the Ganga is drying up because the Gangotriglacier, its main source, is receding at the rate of 10 to 30 meters a year.• While the Ganga is drying up, there are signs now of rising water levels in theBhakra Nangal Dam reservoir.• The melting of glaciers in the Upper Himalayas has been cited as a majorcontributor to this.Rtist @ Tourism
  18. 18. • Thanks to the melting Himalayan glaciers, rising sea levels havesubmerged two islands in the Sunderbans, where tigers roamthrough mangrove forests in the Ganges River delta, and adozen more islands are under threat, scientists say.• The annual number of cyclones has fallen, but they are moreintense now due to global warming and this means more coastalflooding, erosion and more saline water moving in on theislands and also in Bangladesh.• Temperatures have risen by almost one centigrade. It has acascading effect on the crops and monsoons as well.• Goa’s existence from the map would be wiped off if the currenttrend of sea-level rise continues.,Rtist @ Tourism
  19. 19. • A scientific study has revealed that around 4.3 per cent of Goa’s 105kilometer coastline has already been affected by a one meter rise in sealevel, which continues.• The study also says that 7.3 per cent of Goa’s coastal population is affectedby beach erosion which is also very high compared to other States,“By 2050 and 2080 if the sea level would rise by 38 and 59 metersrespectively, then Goa would lose maximum percentage of its land and itspopulation,” an article in the book on ‘Global Warming and Climatic Change’by Dr Desh Bandhu has claimed.• God’s own country, Kerala, and its neighboring Lakshadweep Islands havealso become the victims of global warming and climate change. Moreworrying is the drastic three degree rise in temperatures in the fragile andeco-sensitive Lakshadweep Islands.Rtist @ Tourism
  20. 20. • Coral reefs, the most diverse marine habitat that support half-a-millionspecies, may start losing dominance from Indian seas starting 2030 followingincrease in sea temperature, says a new study.• These and many more such areas like most coastal regions including megacities like Mumbai are extremely vulnerable to the effects of global warming.• Himachal Pradeshs temperature during May was almost as muchas Delhi which disappointed tourists visiting from other parts of North India.• Tourists came to Himachal to get some time off from boiling temperature inother parts of India but they found out similar situation in Himachal Pradesh.• One tourist said that when he first visited Himachal 7-8 years ago in summer,there was no need of Coolers in Shimla but not they had to turned on theircar AC as they reached Shimla.Rtist @ Tourism
  21. 21. • And its not just Shimla, other tourist spots like Kullu and Manali arealso getting warmer.• Himachal which has always been first pick for Indian tourists forsummer vacations are now looking for alternatives.• In past few years temperature has been rising in Himachal Pradeshand number of tourists in summer is decreasing.• In summer temperature of Shimla has reached up to 38 degreeswhich is quite warm.• According to experts this is clear sign of Global Warming and theypredicts that temperature will continue to rise in the upcoming years.• Tour Operators in Himachal are worried because less tourists areenthusiastic to visit Himachal in summer.• Stable Kashmir has given them good alternative of Himachal Pradesh.• Orissa is another state which is already being hit hard by globalwarming.• Whole villages in the coastal regions are disappearing.Rtist @ Tourism
  22. 22. • However this does not mean that the western coastal regions areimmune…just that the eastern coast is more vulnerable at this stage.• The brilliant white of the Taj Mahal is slowly fading to a sickly yellow, dueto carbon emissions which ultimately lead to global warming. In thefamous “Tajmahal Case” a very strong step was taken by Supreme Court tosave the Taj Mahal.• Taj being polluted by fumes and more than 200 factories were closeddown.• Tourism industry fears if temperature continues to rise in the coming years,summer tourism in Himachal Pradesh could be over.• Some areas of Himachal like Shimla now does not receive any snowfall andother hill stations in the state are also getting less snowfall.Rtist @ Tourism
  23. 23. Strategies• Climate change represents a new challenge for tourism, andparticularly for winter tourism in mountain areas.• It is not, however, the case that tourism’s initial position will undergo asudden, radical change.• climate change has to be viewed as a catalyst that will reinforce andaccelerate the pace of structural change in the tourist industry andmore clearly highlight the risks and opportunities inherent in touristdevelopments even now.• The emergence of a 2-tier society in the winter tourism sector – a fewresorts and cableway-companies at a high profit and most resorts andcompanies unprofitable - will not be due to climate change alone, butto the general change in a competitive market as well.Rtist @ Tourism
  24. 24. • On the one hand, we have the top resorts with their already varied andattractive offers and high snow-reliability and, on the other hand, we havethe smaller locations with their less-extensive developments, less-refinedoffers and restricted opportunities for further development• Since climate change is a relatively long-term development in comparison toother trends in tourism, tourism managers and tourists will have everyopportunity to adjust to the different constraints and adopt thecorresponding strategies and measures• One of the most familiar measures in the struggle against snow-deficientwinters is the construction of high cost artificial snowmaking facilities.• Adopting a fatalistic attitude towards climate change and its impacts shouldnot be considered as a true strategy in this respect.Rtist @ Tourism
  25. 25. • Such attitudes are manifested by the fact that neither suppliersnor consumers alter their behavior.• This could also be described by using the term ‘business asusual’.• Another approach that can be classified under the heading of‘fatalism’ is when tourist transport facilities that were used forwinter sports are closed down and dismantled without anyattempt at promoting and reinforcing other types of tourism – inother words, when withdrawal from ski tourism is not activelyplanned.• A fatalistic attitude of this type is most readily evident amongstthe operators of small, isolated ski-lifts at lower altitudes whoexperienced severe financial difficulties as a result of the snow-deficient winters.Rtist @ Tourism
  26. 26. Rtist @ Tourism
  27. 27. What’s next?• We can certainly expect more heated debates on climate change andtourism in the coming months.• It is urgent that civic movements concerned with climate changeissues monitor and respond to these ongoing activities because traveland tourism is one of the world’s most omnipotent industries, notonly because of its size and growth but also as a driver of globalizationand trade liberalization.• Tourism organisations should pay more attention to the problems oftourism-related climate change issues in their action plans and helplobby industry, governments, and intergovernmental agencies to takemore decisive steps to curb relentless tourism expansion thatexacerbates the climate change crisis.• Global warming is a challenge for the tourism industry in mountainareas. But warmer temperatures and a longer summer season are ofminor importance.• Over all, climate change is a threat for mountain tourism, Islandtourism and Coastal tourism due to less snow, less glaciers, rise in sealevels, submerging of Islands and even more extreme events (e.g.landslides).Rtist @ Tourism
  28. 28. • Winter tourism and mountain tourism depends on good snowconditions and is highly sensitive to snow-deficient winters.• Climate research findings show that there will be an increase inthe number of winters with little snow on account of climatechange. The tourism representatives should not just sit back idlyin the face of climate change.• They are reacting to the deteriorating snow conditions and thechanges in demand.• Measures like especially artificial snowmaking to maintain skitourism and creating artificial beaches like the Promenadebeach, Pondicherry to maintain beach tourism rank at theforefront.• Tourists demand good snow conditions, good coastal areas andhence, this is what has to be offered that is artificial.Rtist @ Tourism
  29. 29. • In any case, the impacts of climate change will involvesignificant costs for tourism.• One of the most important questions will be, how young peoplewould face situations, if there is only little snow in mountainregions, if there are no coastal areas and proper beaches, ifislands are submerged and monuments like Taj Mahaldeteriorates.• And isn’t it the time for tourism community to act and sustainIndian tourism to present it to the upcoming generations, it ismy duty, your duty and our duty to protect tourist attractionsfrom global warming and the best way will be minimizing theemission of gases causing global warming and fighting pollution.• At once, may be difficult but… as said… let the charity start fromour home…Rtist @ Tourism
  30. 30. • More cooperative efforts to combat the negative impacts of climate changeshould be made by the academic community, development aid agencies andNGOs that are specifically concerned with tourism development.• The Indian NGO Equations (Equitable Tourism Options) made a good startwhen it released a ‘Call for Action on Climate Change, Biodiversity andTourism’ on occasion of the International Biodiversity Day on 22 May 2007’.• Gujarat Forest Department manage a “Social Forestry Programme” forplanting trees on non-forest lands and became a pioneer to improve GreenCover of the state.• The objectives were to increase the number of trees in Gujarat, promotingthe participation of people and institutions to grow trees, make use ofunproductive land to productive use apart from many other areas that calledfor attention towards sustainable growth.• Managing Climate Change is a major challenge to humanity. To tackle it,Gujarat has established a separate Department for Climate Change.• This Initiative by Gujarat Government is a trendsetter not only for India butfor the whole of Asia as it is the “First in Asia” with a Department for ClimateChange.• It is the only 4th State/Province in the World to have a Department forClimate Change.Rtist @ Tourism
  31. 31. • Among other things, it called on the tourism industry to come upwith an authentic response to climate change.• “The responsibility of seeking viable and sustainable solutions toavert the climate crisis must take into account particularly theplight of the most vulnerable communities around the world.”• As a sector of the economy that is severely affected by climatechange, however, tourism needs to focus more on mitigationstrategies in its own best interests.• This holds particularly true for the traffic generated by nationaland international tourism and, above all, for air traffic.• Tourist development and tourist projects not only need to beverified and evaluated in terms of their social and environmentalsustainability but must also be assessed from the climate-compatibility angle.Rtist @ Tourism
  32. 32. Thank You…!!!©Ramakrishna Kongallae-mail: artist.ramakrishna@gmail.comRtist @ Tourism