Session 9 - Sustainable development in insular regions under tourism pressures: an integrated approach

Sustainable Tourism in protected areas: Balancing Ecotourism and Conservation

Athena II Thursday 31 August 12:30 - 13:00

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) strives to promote tourism development that supports, in equal measure, the conservation of biodiversity, the social welfare and the economic security of the host countries and communities. Ecotourism, defined as responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people, has gained significant attention in recent years as a way to balance economic growth with environmental protection.

The panel aims to:

  • Delve into the intersection between tourism and conservation, with a particular focus on protected areas and the potential for ecotourism to promote sustainable development
  • Address the impact (physical and economic effects) of climate change on biodiversity and water resources
  • Discuss best practices for designing and managing ecotourism activities in protected areas, ensuring that they benefit both the natural environment and local communities

The session is organized in collaboration with Natural Environment and Climate Change Agency (NECCA). N.E.C.C.A was founded in 2020 and aims to implement the policy formulated by the Ministry of Environment and Energy (MEEN) for the management of protected areas. N.E.C.C.A is charged with coordinating a series of actions, projects and procedures regarding: the implementation of national policies set by the MEEN for the management of protected areas in Greece, biodiversity conservation, promotion and implementation of sustainable development actions and climate change mitigation.