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Who Owns Paradise?

Ecotourism and sustainable development

eTN  Aug 27, 2008

WASHINGTON, DC - When ecotourism first emerged in the 1970s, it was hailed as a tool for protecting pristine nature while transforming the economies of nations in the developing world. But does ecotourism actually reduce a traveler’s impact on the environment and support host countries and their people?

In Ecotourism and Sustainable Development: Who Owns Paradise? Martha Honey, codirector of the Center on Ecotourism and Sustainable Development, addresses this question and guides the conscientious traveler to find genuine ecotourism projects and resources. “Although ‘green’ travel is being aggressively marketed as a win-win solution for the Third World, the environment, the tourist and the travel industry, close examination shows a much more complex reality,” said Honey.

Drawing on her experience as an award-winning investigative journalist reporting on East Africa and Central America, Honey reveals the positive and negative implications of ecotourism. The second edition includes new and updated case studies, including a revealing new chapter on ecotourism projects in the United States, the world’s leading tourism destination.

This is an engagingly written, informative and thoroughly researched book that is useful for students, the tourism industry, and avid travelers alike. Honey provides powerful insight into an industry that is expected to grow in the coming years and will have a profound impact on the world’s natural resources, indigenous communities, wildlife and the environment.

Martha Honey is codirector of the Center on Ecotourism and Sustainable Development (CESD) and editor of Ecotourism and Certification: Setting Standards in Practice (Island Press, 2002). Previously she worked as a freelance journalist in Latin America and Africa for The Washington Post, The New York Times, the Associated Press, ABC-TV and the BBC. She has received numerous awards for her investigative journalism.

Island Press, a nonprofit 501(c) 3 organization, was established in 1984 to stimulate, shape and communicate the ideas that are essential for solving environmental problems. Island Press's books, outreach and programs help stimulate new approaches, educate professionals and the public and prepare the next generation of environmental leaders.

Ecotourism and sustainable development

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