Forests

Forests

Forests are the life support systems of the planet. These rich ecosystems are home to over 80% of the world’s land-based plant and animal species. Humans also depend on forests, from the air we breathe to the food we eat. Tropical jungles and temperate forests alike quench our thirst for adventure. And because of their ability to store carbon, forests are also one of our best weapons in the fight against climate change.

Needless to say, there are countless reasons why it’s essential to keep forests standing. That’s why we’re working to ensure that tourism protects these valuable ecosystems and promotes healthy and productive forests.

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Forests cover nearly one-third of our planet’s land area

Forests support the livelihoods of about 1.6 billion people

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3.3 million hectares of forest were lost between 2010 and 2015

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Estimates suggest that forests store around 80 or more metric tons of carbon per acre

Forest Tourism

Forests, along with the wildlife that live there, are important to tourism. Their vast, secluded wilderness provides an ideal playground for hiking, camping, birdwatching, mountain biking, and other recreational activities. Their tree-blanketed landscapes also supply valuable timber that is used for fuel and construction.

When people explore forests and other wild places it can promote greater understanding and appreciation of nature. This in turn fuels environmental protection. Because forest-based tourism often occurs in more rural areas, it also generates important economic benefits for indigenous communities and underserved populations. In addition, visitor fees help finance forest conservation and protected areas, such as national parks.

Explore the Issues

While tourism can inspire forest conservation, it can also contribute to deforestation. Wilderness areas may be cleared for new tourism development, wildfires ignited by careless backpackers, or timber harvested for construction materials. Click below to learn more about the different issues that we are addressing to protect our remarkable forest ecosystems.

Destructive Tourism Development
The construction of tourism infrastructure can result in the devastation of forest environments and wildlife.

Destructive Tourism Development

Overharvesting of Forest Resources
Tourism can put excessive pressure on vital forest resources, which are harvested for fuel, furniture, or construction materials.

Overharvesting of Forest Resources

Harmful Wildlife Interactions
Careless behavior by tourists or tourism businesses can pose a risk to forest habitats and the animals that live there.

Harmful Wildlife Interactions

How We Safeguard Nature

Discover what we’re doing to protect forests and minimize tourism’s impacts on nature and wildlife.

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