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Argument: Ecotourism economically benefits local people

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Supporting evidence

  • Mohammed I. Eraqi, "Ecotourism economics: the case of Egypt". International Journal of Services and Operations Management. 2008 - "This paper endeavours to analyse the benefits and costs of ecotourism and explain how ecotourism can improve the standard of living of local people in Egypt from the points of view of local people in Egyptian ecotourism destinations. A survey approach was implemented to collect data from 268 respondents using a completed questionnaire technique. The research outcomes show that local people can achieve socioeconomic value from ecotourism activities that are implemented in the ecotourism destinations in Egypt. The main factors that control the socioeconomic value and benefits yielding from ecotourism strategies and projects are the reduction of damage to natural and cultural resources, threat to the quality of local environment and the reduced level of pollution, environmental and social costs. To guarantee and sustain socioeconomic value in the long term, the ecotourism processes should be achieved through a broader strategy for developing local communities around ecotourism destinations in Egypt."
  • "Community-based Ecotourism Benefiting Local Residents". The Nature Conservancy. Retrieved 1.29.08 - "Community-based Ecotourism Benefiting Local Residents - "One of the basic tenets of ecotourism is to engage local communities so they benefit from conservation, economic development and education. While nearby inhabitants are those most directly affected by the establishment of parks and protected areas, they also stand to profit the most by their conservation. By bringing residents into the business of ecotourism, not only can local people meet their economic needs, but they also can maintain and enhance the 'sense of place' that is critical for guaranteeing long-term conservation.
The Conservancy works closely with indigenous and other local groups to establish community businesses, provide tourism training and marketing assistance, and develop compatible economic activities such as handicraft production and tour guiding. This focus on people reflects the Conservancy’s commitment to work across landscapes, incorporating a concern for human populations as well as for the natural world we inhabit."
  • "Benefits Of Ecotourism". Untamed Path.com. Retrieved 1.29.08 - "In Costa Rica, Jamaica, and Sri Lanka, USAID support led to the creation of entirely new wildlife parks that have begun to spawn tourism facilities around them. Tourist demand for food, lodging, souvenirs, educational materials, and guide and transportation services stimulates local investment, employment, and incomes. Costa Rica has introduced revenue retention arrangements to keep earnings from entrance fees for park operations; it awards contracts to local communities to operate food and souvenir concessions as a means of building local involvement in and commitment to park conservation. Costa Rica has also included a variable park entrance fee structure (charging higher fees to international tourists than to local visitors) to increase revenues.
In Nepal, Madagascar, and Thailand, USAID has supported integrated conservation and development activities to promote new livelihoods including nature tourism based employment as alternatives to encroaching into protected national parks for hunting, logging, and farming. Engagement of local people in planning and conducting ecotourism activities has generated a new group of stakeholders with a vested interest in protecting parks. The new nature jobs depend on it.
USAID's Central American Paseo Pantera ("Panther Walk") project has helped establish national nature tourism councils in Guatemala and Honduras to involve local communities and tourism enterprises. The councils also enlist international conservation organizations as advisers to promote green, self-sustaining tourism activities.
In 1989 the Agency began a Parks in Peril project to improve management of 20 parks in Latin America and the Caribbean. The project also seeks to enhance recreational and educational use of the parks. For example, in Bolivia, Parks in Peril is working through a U.S. environmental nongovernment organization (NGO) to assist a Bolivian NGO in providing nature tourism packages in two national parks. The project has helped create jobs for tour guides, park rangers, educators, and the like in several countries in the region.
These experiences suggest that ecotourism can be a constructive component of strategies to promote, at the same time, both environmental protection and development of private enterprise."

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