Tourism & Recreation
Maintaining the Attraction of Coastal Destinations
This goal measures the number of tourists, their length of stay, and the sustainability of tourism in coastal areas.
Coastal and marine tourism is a vital part of a country’s economy.
What Does This Score Mean?
An absolute reference point for Tourism & Recreation does not exist, because it is not possible to determine how much tourism or recreation any country should have – marine related or otherwise.
Since the ability to provide tourism and recreational opportunities differs in each country, scores for this goal measure the number of international tourists arriving, the number of days they stay, and the degree to which the local governance and economy facilitate the development of tourist and recreational opportunities. These measures are compared against all countries globally.
The distribution of score values was skewed by a few very high scores for countries with high rates of tourism relative to their population size. These scores would not be an appropriate reference point for other countries, since geographic and other reasons would prevent them from reaching such a target.
Therefore, the reference point is set at the value for the 90th percentile country, which was about 25% of the maximum score achieved by those top countries. Sustainability is measured both by considering the number of tourist-days to the country’s total population and by using data from the World Economic Forum’s Travel and Tourism Competitive Index (TTCI), which includes numerous indicators on human, cultural and natural resources as well as infrastructure, health, hygiene and safety, among others.
These factors influence the intensity of social and environmental pressures and ability to maintain tourism and recreation opportunities. The goal scores higher when a country’s tourist-days are high compared to other nations, when the density of tourists is the same or more than the local population, and when TTCI scores are high.
Although many countries suffer from poverty, political turmoil, war or other volatile conditions that make tourism unsafe or unappealing and also make it difficult for those countries to provide infrastructure that might support increased tourism, the current score of 10 is probably underestimated.
This is because data on the proportion of international tourists visiting the coast are not available for each country. Therefore, the incoming visitors were assumed to be evenly distributed across the country, although it is likely that they are mostly concentrated on the coast. In addition, consistent global data on “domestic” marine and coastal tourism is also lacking, and such data would likely serve to raise scores for certain countries.
Tourism and Recreation Are an Important Part of Coastal Communities
How Is It Measured?
Each goal is evaluated on the basis of four dimensions
Present Status is a goal's current value (based on the most recent available data) compared to a reference point.
Trend is the average percent change in the present status for the most recent 5 years of data.
Pressures are the sum of the ecological and social pressures that negatively affect scores for a goal.
Resilience is the sum of the ecological factors and social initiatives (policies, laws, etc) that can positively affect scores for a goal by reducing or eliminating pressures.
Pressures are human-caused stressors that influence both ecological and social systems, negatively affecting the ability of a goal to deliver its benefits to people.
Status refers to the current value of a goal relative to its goal-specific reference point. The reference point is the best condition for a goal that can reasonably be achieved; it is a target to aim for when taking actions to improve ocean health.