Preparing for climate change: recognising its early impacts through the perceptions of dive tourists and dive operators in the Egyptian Red Sea

21 February 2012 | Downloads - publication


Climate change has the potential to permanently alter the attraction of many destinations
and substantially impact the benefits derived from tourism. These impacts can be
reduced if vulnerability to climate change is understood and operators take steps to
adapt. Some of the more immediate and manageable impacts are likely to result from
changes in tourist perceptions and attitudes towards climate change. We test for early
impacts in the Red Sea region and for the awareness of tourism operators. We
interviewed 150 tourists and 35 operators. Our data suggest that changes in tourist
awareness are already apparent; yet, operators ascribe only a moderate level of
environmental and climate awareness to them. This ‘perception gap’ increases the
vulnerability of dive operators.

Coral reefs 14, Koh Bon island, Thailand