This article was originally published by The Global Environment Facility (GEF)


“Tourism is one of the world’s largest industries, contributing trillions of dollars to the global economy and supporting the livelihoods of an estimated one in ten people worldwide. Much of that tourism depends on the natural world — on beautiful landscapes and seascapes that visitors flock to in search of escape, a second wind, and a direct connection with nature itself. Coastal and marine tourism represents a significant share of the industry and is an important component of the growing, sustainable Blue Economy, supporting more than 6.5 million jobs — second only to industrial fishing. With anticipated global growth rates of more than 3.5%, coastal and marine tourism is projected to be the largest value-adding segment of the ocean economy by 2030, at 26%.

That nature is the foundation for much of the world’s tourism is clear — travelers are willing to pay a premium for a room with a view, and words like “pristine,” “remote,” and “unspoiled” are frequently assigned to amenities like beaches, coral reefs, and panoramic seascapes. The dependency of the travel and tourism industry on a healthy environment goes much deeper than that, however. Not only does a reef provide entertainment value for seaside visitors, but it can deflect waves that cause erosion and reduce the risk of storm surges that can harm the industry’s bottom line.

Furthermore, mangroves and seagrass meadows are excellent at absorbing and storing carbon, reducing harmful emissions that cause climate change. And all of those coastal ecosystems produce fish that are a favorite on restaurant menus, providing additional economic opportunity for coastal communities…”

Read on at: TheThe Global Environment Facility (GEF).