We keep saying that human interference is the main reason for most of the environmental degradations. Does that mean environmental conservationists propagate no human footfall in natural places which need protection? No, human footfall doesn't necessarily mean harm. Let me explain.
One of the many ways we can support conservation efforts is through tourism. We get attracted to the natural beauty of many places. When we start visiting these places, we create demand for food, hotels, infrastructure, guide, local knowledge, arts, crafts and many such activities. Our demand creates jobs for the local people and many more. In 2017, international tourism generated $1.6 trillion in earnings and one tenth of all jobs. Directly or indirectly tourism industry contributed to approximately 10% of world's GDP. This leads to development of these areas, economically and infrastructurally. Locals get more incentive to preserve their cultural, environmental heritage and maintain peace & security to attract more tourists in the future.
But does that mean we can go anywhere and do whatever we want? No. That's where Responsible Tourism comes into picture. When we visit these beautiful places, we have a moral responsibility to treat the place, its flora and fauna and the entire ecosystem with respect, to protect it for the others and the future generations to enjoy.
We have to make sure that we don't litter, don't disturb wildlife or harm them, do not throw plastic everywhere which wildlife can choke on. We should not do anything to pollute the air or water, anything to disturb the natural balance of the environment. Only this way we can enjoy the place while conserving it at the same time.