The process of coastal erosion involves the way through which sea level rise, intense wave action, and coastal flooding can wear down or remove soils, rocks, or sands along the coastline. Coastal areas are transitional zones between land and sea with high diversity. They are among the most diverse and fragile ecosystems on the planet, including mangrove forests along with coral reefs.
However, the coasts are subject to massive pressures from increasing growth in urbanization processes. Over half of the people live in the coastal regions (within 60 km of the ocean) and this figure is increasing. Today coastal erosion is widespread, it occurs worldwide, and it has about 70% of the coastal sand erosion that is occurring around the world.
The statistics show that beaches with sandy shores are experiencing the most severe erosion with some of them eroding over five meters every year. Research shows that the Dover Cliffs experienced an average of 0.7 up to 2.3 inches of erosion every year over the past 7,000 years however, in the last 150 years, it has increased up to 8.6 up to 12.5 inches annually.
How Does Tourism Damage the Coastal Area?
In terms of scale, the tourism industry is one of the largest industries worldwide. In total it is estimated that tourism and travel make up around 10 per cent of the global GDP. The annual earnings have been estimated to be $7.6 trillion. Although these numbers are staggering, however, it is worth noting that 80 per cent of the tourism is located on the coast in coastal towns and regions.
Tourism is the interconnected system that involves tourists as well as the services available and used (facilities, transport, attractions, and housing) to facilitate their mobility. The essential elements for tourism include the attractiveness of facilities, accessibility to destinations, travel ability, and motivation. Tourism in coastal regions is among the fastest-growing forms of the worldwide tourism industry, however, the amount of damage it causes than it helps will depend on the way it is put into application.
When someone thinks to go on vacation the first thing that comes to mind is the beach It is estimated that (63 per cent of Europeans like the beach as a vacation spot). There is a thriving tourist industry all over the world. If you’re looking to relax in the sun, or go on more adventurous things such as surfing and diving, beaches will appeal to the interests of everyone. In reality, the world of coasts and maritime tourism has been the fastest-growing sector of tourism worldwide!
The massive influx of tourists, usually in a small area can have a massive impact. They increase the waste, pollution, Erosion, and water requirements of the local inhabitants. The effects of tourism on coastal erosion are complex. While there are many factors that contribute to shoreline change, the most important factor is human behaviour.
- The first problem caused by tourism is building structures along the shoreline. When people build homes, hotels, restaurants, and other buildings near the coastline, they increase the amount of sediment that flows into the sea. Sediment is a type of soil that contains rocks and sand. These materials get washed away by waves and currents and end up in the ocean. If there isn’t enough sediment to hold back the water, then the land becomes unstable and eventually erodes.
- Furthermore cutting down trees in order to build hotels, homes or restaurants and other buildings close to the coast has also been a source of coastal erosion and landslides.
- In addition to building new structures, tourists often bring trash to beaches. Plastic bags, bottles, wrappers, and other debris can be found littering many beaches around the world. Beachgoers who leave trash behind are contributing to the destruction of our oceans.
- The problem is that beachgoers often forget that they left trash behind after they go swimming. When people return from the water, they find plastic bags, bottles, wrappings, and other trash strewn across the sand. These items can easily wash into the ocean, where they become tangled in seaweed and coral reefs.
- That’s right. One of the most significant problems with tourism on the coast is the constant bashing of the earth by tourists. A tourist attraction that is popular during peak times, could be crowded with visitors that number into the thousands per day.
- The most important thing for any tourist industry is the establishment of a reliable transport system for tourists. Also, it is important to have transport within the tourist destination so that tourists can get around in a comfortable manner. The largest way of transportation in the coastal tourism industry is cruise ships. Once they have arrived on the shores. They require harbouring. Studies have revealed that massive areas of coastal habitat have been dredged in order to create the ports needed for multiple cruise ships within a single day. Dredging and levelling result in huge amounts of silt which can choke the habitats of species of fish and invertebrates. Cruise anchors pose a significant danger to corals. And these may cause coastal erosion.
How to Promote Sustainable Tourism in Coastal Areas
To ensure sustainability and to overcome coastal erosion, tourism and community leaders should strive at maximizing the positive effects and minimize the negative effects of tourism within the host community.
By Promoting Sustainable Tourism in Coastal Areas we can overcome the impacts of tourism-related activities such as wastewater, coastal erosion, garbage, sediment flow, cutting of trees, cruise ship pollution, and many other problems on coastal erosion.
The government should promote sustainable tourism in coastal areas. Tourism accommodations are an important source of wastewater, so wastewater treatment facilities should be constructed in these regions.
The untreated sewage and industrial waste are disposed of in the oceans, leading to economic health, biodiversity loss, and also leading to coastal erosion. To preserve the coastal area, some steps are required, including enhancing the capability of waste management on coasts and encouraging recycling, prohibiting plastics and contacting the erosion control companies as well as educating the hotel and resort managers on wastewater treatment.
Additionally cutting down trees in order to create hotels is a cause of coastal erosion and landslides. The tourism department and hotels need to be aware of their role in the protection of the natural environment and in order to prevent our coasts from coastal erosion.
Furthermore, environmental regulations must be enforced with strict adherence.