The real cost of exports and tourism

February, 2020

  • In calculating the pollution level of a country, assign how much of it is due to domestic consumption and how much due to exports (including tourism).
  • This can help us ascertain the ‘real’ cost of foreign exchange earnings to a country. Local populations (and their environments) can suffer in many ways due to ‘over tourism’ and excessive export production.
  • Interestingly, Bhutan’s tourism approach focuses on ‘high value – low impact’ tourism.
  • By ‘low impact’ they refer to the environment. The economic price we pay for most products does not reflect the ecological cost i.e. the environmental impact of our consumption.