Tourism can have a negative impact on the environment. As more strain is placed on our natural resources, and the ever increasing problem of global warming, the natural environment is now at its most venerable stage.
Gartner (1996) cites three changes in society that have affected the natural environment. The first change is the rapid population growth, which has lead to ever-increasing demand for further exploitation of renewable and non-renewable resources. The second change is the increasing industrial growth, which has accelerated the rate of air and water pollution. The third change is the general lack of public awareness of the value of natural resources and man’s limited knowledge of the complex components of the environment. For example, people might not know that damage to some parts of the environment, directly affects other parts of the environment.
In terms of tourist generated impacts, many tourists are not aware of the environmental consequences of their actions. For example, research conducted by Harrington et al (2003) into the impact that tourism has had on the protected areas of the Australian Alps, it was discovered that water quality was damaged as a result of simple things such as runoffs from ski slopes, roads and car parks was an