Climate Change in the Arctic Prompts Growth in Adventure Tourism: Weighing the Pros & Cons

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The changing climate is also changing opportunities for tourism and exploration! Because arctic tourism is made more accessible with recent climate changes, the adventure industry is working hard to promote mindfulness among its professionals, teaching up-and-coming professionals like you to be respectful of the arctic’s pristine landscape.

Training in adventure tourism is a guaranteed way for you to make the most out of your career. Not only will it give you the skills you need to take on one of the world’s most in-demand industries, but it grants you intimate access to some of the most spectacular sites our world has to offer. Adventure tourism professionals work as coordinators, advisors, and guides on adventure tours everywhere from the northern arctic to the southern Sahara, helping people experience the vacations of their dreams.

Informed by researchers, scientists, and policy-makers from the eight countries that make up the International Arctic Council, here are some climate change-related pros and cons to consider as you pursue your own career in adventure tourism:

Why Adventure Tourists Need to Consider the Arctic’s Biodiversity

One main concern of the Arctic Council is tourism’s impact on the biodiversity of newly-accessible regions of the arctic.

They are particularly concerned about the effect tourism will have on the Arctic’s polar region, which is changing more rapidly than other parts of the world. Because conditions here are so harsh, it takes a long time for the land and its inhabitants to recover from any man-made damage.

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Scientists and adventure tour guides work together to keep the arctic pristine

Cruise ships are now able to reach the polar region, allowing people unprecedented access to pristine fjords, calving glaciers, icebergs and unique wildlife. Everything from plants to migrating birds, fish, caribou, and polar bears are at risk of being affected by humans in their midst. The Council calls on tourism professionals to “strike the delicate balance between allowing people access to nature and destroying it in the process.”

Adventure Tourism Pros Help Tourists Make Positive Impacts Instead

We’re glad to report that the adventure tourism industry is rising to the challenge, creating programs that leave minimal and beneficial impacts on arctic sites. Using principles of ‘citizen science,’ many arctic adventure tours now encourage tourists to take part in bird counts, animal spotting, documenting plant species, and reporting on the state of receding glaciers.

For example, when arctic adventure groups spot whales swimming off a local coast, the group can quickly take note of the species, time, and location of those animals, contributing important data sets to fill in gaps missed by scientific observers. It becomes even more satisfying for these tourists to return home knowing their experiences contributed to the preservation of these endangered creatures.

Along with encouraging volunteerism, today’s arctic adventure tourism professionals are enriching their tours with expert insight—by including biologists, ornithologists, historians, anthropologists, and climate scientists to give educational lectures throughout voyages and help lead the adventure expeditions.

It’s easy for adventure tourists to lend a helping hand while visiting the arctic

It’s easy for adventure tourists to lend a helping hand while visiting the arctic

Arctic Climate Change is Heating up Southern Adventure Tourism Too

Your adventure course, training will qualify you to work in destinations far south of the Arctic Circle, too. The rising arctic temperatures are shown to be a cause of shifting travel and tourism patterns worldwide.

Southern-Hemisphere countries like Jamaica and Thailand are now facing rising temperatures and water shortages, requiring new approaches to adventure program development and resource management. Global tourism research projects that business in Northern-Hemisphere countries is likely to increase. This is yet another reason why now’s the time for Canadians to take on adventure tourism careers.

Are you interested in pursuing your own adventure training?

Visit CTC to take the first step.

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