Tourism contributes CO2 emissions, mostly through increased use of air and road transportation. Beyond that, the major direct pressure from coastal tourism on the marine and coastal environment is the demand for space, both in the coastal zone, resulting mainly in urbanization, and on the coastline itself, through construction of marinas and other infrastructure that leads to concretisation of the shores. The concentration of tourism within specific geographical areas and limited time periods increases pressure on natural resources such as fresh water and leads to higher rates of sewage and solid waste production. Coastal tourism is, by definition, located in sensitive habitats within the coastal zone, such as beaches, sand dunes, and wetlands. The unavoidable result is change in the state of these habitats and their associated ecosystems, as well as economic impacts on other activities that benefit from coastal ecosystem services. Unsustainable development of mass tourism will result in the rapid degradation of fragile natural habitats (EEA and UNEP 1999, UNEP/MAP/MED POL 2005).
From collection: State of the Mediterranean Marine and Coastal Environment