A framework for managing the biophysical effects of tourism on the natural environment in New Zealand
Tourists in New Zealand often impact on the natural environments that are the very reason for their visits. It is, therefore, necessary to manage those natural environments to help ensure that tourism is an environmentally sustainable activity. To assist that management process, it is helpful to establish an overarching classification framework so that consistent guidelines and environmental performance standards can be applied. This paper describes a framework for management of the biophysical impacts of tourism using a natural environment classification of the assets visited by tourists. 'Best available information' is then used to develop indicators of environmental change and associated guidelines for management at a range of levels. As a minimum, broad guidelines can be developed for the upper levels of each component of the classification. More detailed and site-specific guidelines are available in some circumstances, where appropriate research has been undertaken. Ongoing evaluation of the combination of indicators and guidelines establishes if the natural attraction is being sustainably managed. The system has been applied to 'scenic icons', wildlife attractions and caves on the West Coast of the South Island.... [Show full abstract]
Keywordstourism; environmental impact; sustainability; classification framework; environmental performance standards; Westland; scenic icon sites
Copyright © 2002 J. Ward et al.