Should I stay or should I go? The environmental tourist’s travel dilemma

True environmental travel is about education, and not about taking selfies with a bottlenose dolphin.

We rocked and rolled across the sand dunes of Fraser Island – the largest sand island in the world, off the coast of Queensland, Australia. Our guide told us how unique the location is, how it is home to fauna and flora not found anywhere else and how it is an important ecological site for the world. “But we’re driving right over it?” I say. “How can this be good?” (And yes, I know I had chosen to do this.) “How else will you see it?” he asked me.

He had a point. But I wondered, should I even be here? However many sapling trees we plant or bananas we don’t eat in an attempt to compensate for our travel, tourism leaves a footprint on the world. We can try to be green, but by travelling and touring we are emitting gases, using fuels and ultimately harming the planet. Hardcore evangelists of the slow travel movement argue that it is impossible to be green if you fly somewhere, and that in fact, to minimise damage, it’s best if we all just stay at home.

Read more at Blue & Green Tomorrow.

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