Tourist Tuesday, 5/8/18

Surprise: Global Travel is a Huge Contributor to Climate Change

This article excerpt is from KQED, published yesterday. The two articles linked within this one are crucial reading. I urge everyone to take the time to read them. They also directly relate to our situation. Has anyone made the effort to measure the effects of carbon emissions in Big Sur Valley? Or in Monterey Peninsula lately? Are we smothering ourselves in pursuit of more and more tourism? Critical questions.
San Francisco welcomed a record total of 25.1 million visitors in 2016, an increase of 2.3 percent from 2015, according to the San Francisco Travel Association. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Researchers warn that the surge in global tourism is outstripping the “decarbonization” of tourism-related technology.

In the first study of its kind, researchers found that carbon emissions from world travel contribute about 8 percent of all carbon emissions, four times more than previously estimated.

That rate is expected to grow 4 percent annually, outpacing the footprints of many other economic sectors, according to the study published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.

The study takes a sweeping look at the environmental impact of  global tourism by examining the entire supply chain, from flights, dining, to shopping purchases. High-income countries account for the majority of this footprint, with the U.S.  topping the list followed by China, Germany and India.

“Our analysis is a world-first look at the true cost of tourism — including consumables such as food from eating out and souvenirs — it’s a complete life-cycle assessment of global tourism, ensuring we don’t miss any impacts,”  said senior author Arunima Malik, who teaches sustainability at the University of Sydney.

For the rest of the article, see:

4 thoughts on “Tourist Tuesday, 5/8/18

  1. How much of these tourist-related ‘increases’ in this and that (and shortages of space and resources) are ultimately traced back to overpopulation? In quality management you always look for root cause. To do otherwise is just dithering.

  2. Thank you Kate for continuing to educate us about the challenges of over tourism. Now to craft solutions…

  3. Its not tourism, Its consumerism, People are being manufactured for a growth economy. zombie economics.

    Economic growth is always desirable.

    To determine whether economic growth is desirable requires us to examine its value objectively, without blindly assuming that all growth is worth pursuing. Growth comes with both benefits and costs. The goal is to grow the economy when the benefits are higher than the costs, and to have the wisdom to stop growing when the costs catch up. The economic laws of diminishing marginal utility and increasing marginal costs tell us that, over time, costs do catch up with benefits.

    A steady-state economy is the same thing as a depression or recession (the result of a failed growth economy).

    A steady-state economy is not a failed growth economy, stability or equalibrium in a steady-state economy is a healthy condition, a condition that allows people to meet their needs without undermining the life-support systems of the planet.

  4. In particular, diesel fumes are very harmful to people and other living things. Quite apart from the frustration & chaos, backed up traffic on highway 1 is having a huge impact on air quality in the short- term— empirical evidence though not measured, despite whatever far removed air quality reporting might suggest. Thank God we don’t have a cruise ship port ! Oh yeah, apparently we do….thankfully not overused yet.
    Aircraft emissions- just look up! Helicopter tours over a Marine Sanctuary?
    But perhaps a Toll Road Gateway ( with residential e-pass) could provide- opportunity to educate, deter some traffic and encourage carpooling, generate funds for conservation in this area ( misplaced optimism, ok) and a tool for measuring traffic and related emissions!
    Also, ditto to the other comments, especially about never giving up!

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