Is It Worth My Life?

Time To Extinction- 8 years.

We all love to travel. The thrill of stepping off that airplane, to bask in the warm rays of the tropical sun. Is there anything better?

Sometimes, we save for years, just to lay our overworked eyes on an exotic verdant palm tree.

But, how many years will it take to save a life?

Right now, elephants are on the brink of extinction. You may be thinking we need to stop these poachers!

Yet the sad reality is, you are more responsible than you think- there are merely 415,000 left on the continent (WWF, 2020).

“A study carried out in the Western Ghats shows that deforestation has led to the loss of 6,761 sq km of elephant habitat over 40 years leading to increase in human-elephant conflict” (Mysuru, 2019).

Our tourism industry is one of the most significant contributors to deforestation on Earth, destroying vital ecosystems and bringing these majestic species to extinction.

We all know that trees are vaulable resources but what if tourism managers could promote the use of energy efficient appliances?

Could rainwater harvesting and decreasing food waste drastically help deforestation?

We, as tourism managers, have a responsibility to recognise the devastation brought by our consumer actions, and to take the necessary steps to make it a more sustainable future.

(Source: Pexels)

As our knowledge grows, so will our awareness and societal pressures, from making unsustainable choices.

As managers, we can utilise these pressures through eco-selling.

Eco-selling is a fantastic strategy to ensure that today’s consumer needs, or rather expectations of sustainability, can be shaped to our benefit: like meeting the needs of the millenials and harbouring the ideologies of the COP26 goals.

According to Rannard and Gillett (2021), COP26 world leaders promise to end deforestation by 2030, meaning, through marketing our sustainible ideas and practides to tourists, we can eco sell and thereby embrace our responsibility towards the environment- a deforestation reduction scheme.

(Source: Pexels)

Page and Dowling (2002) argue that tourism and the environment are interdependant and that, as managers, we have an obligation to offer consumers a sustainable choice.

Without offering sustainability in our services, we are, according to Campbell (McCool and Moisey, 2001), embracing “non-sustainability” and this means our industry’s effect on the global environment, is heavy.

Yet, through doing this, would we really be taking responsibility for our previous unsustainable choices?

Tourists want sustainability; they want local restaurants, small sustainable hotels and the protection of native species- they do not wish for the extinction of Elephants.

So lets give them what they want!

Elephants are directly impacted by all of these business ventures. Shah (2015) discussed how elephants have lost their sense of place through the habitat loss in Indonesia, all for the construction of the Mandarin Hotel.

In moving the travel and tourism industry into the future, we must steer towards sustainability- if not to serve the future, then to meet the needs of our audience.

So, if we wish for our industry to thrive, then as managers, we must act where we can, and protect the environment and our future.

(Source: Unsplash)

There is value in sustainability, and as it grows, the more damaging a single, un-sustainable choice becomes.

We must evolve with our consumers.

If not to protect our world, and her beautiful creatures, then to fit the needs of today’s tourist, our consumers.

As a future manager within the industry, will you strive to make the sustainable choice?

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Withney says:

This blog open my eyes on how we as humans who are in high demand of wanting to go to different country for fun and relaxation are contributing to the extinction of the animals that are going extinct or have fully gone extinct. I believe with the generation we have now we will be able to create the difference if the government use the power the new generation have and in the future we might be able to live a sustainable life where we are not affecting our eco system much.

s1903296 says:

Hi Whitney, this is an intriguing idea, it is important for the younger generations to take a stance against deforestation. Currently, the government is pushing COP26, but you’re right- we can do better!
Thankyou so much for your response!

Rhianna Watson says:

Really detailed and well written and really inviting and interesting to read. We need to save our elephants 🐘 i enjoyed reading this and i learnt a fair bit of information and was drawn to how passionate and persuasive this came accoss. Impressive 🙌😊

s1903296 says:

Hi Rhianna, it is wonderful to hear that you found our blog inviting.
Yes, we absolutely need to take action towards a more sustainable tourism industry, to save the elephants and end deforestation!
Hopefully COP26 is way forward!

Trina Hawkins says:

Very informative and emotive piece. I love the title and how it encourages the reader to really think about the true price of their holidays and gives an idea of the actions that can be taken to help the elephants. Because who doesn’t want to help these beautiful animals?

s1903296 says:

Hi Trina, it is refreshing to see your recognition of our title. We wanted to catch the attention of our readers, through an honest, yet impactful title.
In response to your question, I should hope, no-one, but unfortunately some people simply do not care.
We need to make sustainable actions the norm!
Thankyou so much for your response.

Natalia says:

It is something that surprised me but at the same time not. When it comes to endangered species we always go to the conclusion that there must be a bad guy involved, but nothing is that simple. It is important to not point fingers at who is the ‘bad guy’ and just portray what is going on and think of solutions.
This is better written that most of the articles/documentaries about the ecosystem.

s1903296 says:

Thankyou so much for your reply Natalia. Yes, often issues surrounding the environment are often blamed on one person/ brand, but the truth is, all industries contribute towards deforestation. So, it is vital that we take action to make the world more sustainable!
Thankyou for your understanding and for your wonderful insight.

Tom says:

Hearing these things about my favourite animal breaks my heart, and as a future employer in this industry, reading your blog has given me the drive to do something about it.

Great read guys! 😊🐘

Shannon says:

An interesting article which highlights what we as individuals and the tourism industry specifically should be doing to help those who don’t have a voice-nature. There is accountability here which I think it particularly important. Yes, the industry itself needs to keep up with the times and take responsibility but this article also shows how we as the human race need to own up to what has been happening for too long and make changes before it’s too late. Makes you think, is your holiday worth these beautiful creatures lives?

s1903296 says:

Hi Shannon,
What a great question!

If the industry develops sustainable strategies, then it will be a question we will not need to ask, but unfortunately, that is far, far into the future- if it’s there at all.

Your point about the industry taking responsibility is inspiring. It is crucial that as a species, we care for our planets’ creatures as we do ourselves.

Thankyou for your support!

Zara Charles says:

Crazy to think what humans are doing to the world and animals are the main ones facing the consequences. Great Post really eye opening!

s1903296 says:

Hi Zara, Thankyou for reading our blog!
It is wonderful that you find it eye-opening! -that is definitely our goal!

Unfortunately the creatures of this planet are unable to fight for themselves, and so we must fight for them.

Thankyou again for your support!

Kelly says:

An insightful read, this once again highlights the greed of capitalism and the impact it has on mother nature and inevitably it’s habitants on earth. In this case, these dear elephants who never asked for anything, where all they want is to have their own home they can be safe at. Hoping this will raise awareness to the choices we make when we choose more local and sustainable places when on holiday.

s1903296 says:

Hi Kelly,
Thankyou for taking the time to read this blog.
I think it is absolutely wonderful that you recognise the importance of making the sustainable choice. Hopefully this attitude will spread throughout the globe!

It is definitely a human responsibility to prevent deforestation and end the impending extinction of the majestic elephant.

May I ask if you were aware of this nearing extinction (of elephants) prior to reading this blog?

Thanks again for your support!

Gabriella says:

An incredible article describing the harsh truth! The tourist industry can help the environment and help with the matter of extinction! Great way to share awareness using the article itself! 👌🏻

s1903296 says:

Hi Gabriella, it’s refreshing to hear you say that this is the ‘truth’. Unfortunately, not everyone understands that the impacts of deforestation are brought at the hands of people.

May I ask if you were aware of the nearing extinction of elephants before you discovered our blog?

Thankyou so much for your understanding and support.

Karolina says:

This article is greatly influential, as it helps to see the great scale of the effects that deforestation and non-ecological ways of living people are adapted to, have on wild elephants. It is hard to imagine the number of 415,000 to be a small or near extinct number, however compared to human population of 7.9billion, the number of existing elephants do not even compare 1%! This is eye opening, and the article is important in raising awareness to the issue of near extinction of elephants.

s1903296 says:

Hi Karolina, it’s absolutely wonderful to hear that our blog is influential.

Our goal was to open the eyes of readers to the horrific impacts of deforestation upon the majestic elephant, and it seems that we have made an impact.

Thankyou so much for taking the time to hear us, we really appreciate the support.

Hopefully, change can be made so blogs like this become a thing of the past.

But until then, we will act as a voice for mother Earth’s beautiful creatures.

charlotte says:

What an eye-opening blog! Such a shame that innocent creatures are hit the hardest from our deforestation efforts, it seems the tourism industry has to start taking accountability and develop with solutions not excuses.

s1903296 says:

Hi Charlotte!
I 100% agree. Excuses have become somewhat of a cushion for people in power within the tourism industry.
As one of the largest contributors to deforestation, tourism must develop sustainable solutions in order to take accountability for its previous acts of harm against the environment.

Thankyou for taking the time to read this blog.

Michelle says:

Travelling for most people feels like a luxury. A time to relax and reset. What they don’t realise is how much this affects on the environment and animals.
Yet despite this humans still venture out no matter the cost, and look for others to blame.
I agree that we need to develop and implement more sustainable solutions so that we can support local businesses and the environment.
Big eye opener.

s1903296 says:

Hi Michelle, thankyou for taking the time to share your thoughts. Unfortunately, it is all too common for us, as a society, to blame others for deforestation and the extinction of the beautiful elephant.
It is refreshing that you understand the threat of unsustainable choices upon the environment, and that you recognise the need for human kind to “implement and develop more sustainable solutions” to travel.
Thankyou again for your insightful response.

Gabriel says:

This was a really informative piece. I wasn’t even aware that elephants were at risk of going extinct, nor that everyday people are part of the cause 🙁 I’ve always been one for being active about fixing the world but reading this blog kicked me into gear a bit more. Very well written xoxo

s1903296 says:

Hi Gabriel, thankyou so much for your response. Yes, it is all too common that society is unaware of the tragic effects of their ‘everyday actions’, especially in regards to deforestation. Basic actions such as selecting a restaurant to eat at can feed deforestation and the extinction of elephants.
It is refreshing to hear that this blog has kicked you into gear! We must act now!
Thankyou again.

Emily R says:

This article was amazingly written and very knowledgeable. It’s really shown me how much we all affect the world and the animals that live on it. Those poor elephants. This was a real eye opener for me and I’m sure it will be for many others who read it too.

s1903296 says:

Hi Emily, thankyou for taking the time to read this blog.
The goal was to open our readers’ eyes, and it is refreshing to hear that this goal has been achieved.
We hope this blog reaches more people like you, people who care to make a difference.
Thankyou again for your comment!

Isabelle V says:

I am so glad I could read this article. I found the information intellectually persuasive and does really well in sensitively touching upon fundamental issues of our environment. I learnt from this article that there are around 415,000 elephants left (which is incredibly concerning!) but a small hope that by 2030 the threat of deforestation can be eased. Ot gives me hope that we can better this world if we try! The article is amazing. 😊💗

s1903296 says:

Hi Isabelle, yes hopefully with COP26, the threat of extinction to elephants will be eradicated, though it will take many many decades.
Through reading these comments, it has become apparent that not many people of aware of the small number of elephants that exist today.
It is vital that we take action now.
Thankyou for your response.

Comments are closed.