A Simple User's Guide to Certification for Sustainable Tourism and Ecotourism
Tourism is an enormous and widespread industry. It is found all over the world, so its impacts, social, economic, and environmental, are also worldwide.
These impacts can be positive, doing good, or negative, doing harm. Sustainable tourism usually aims to have minimal negative impacts, to minimize harm, and to optimize economic benefits. Ecotourism, a type of sustainable tourism, is usually conducted in largely untouched natural areas, which tend to be both environmentally and often socially sensitive (especially if local indigenous groups are involved), so its potential impacts can be even greater, for good or ill. Ecotourism aims to extend the positive impacts, through a special focus on conservation, benefits for host populations, and the education of visitors.