"This study has also found that some official policies have not been followed, either in fact or in spirit; and a number of objectives have proven unrealistic. The ceiling on the number of passengers permitted to disembark per day has been continually revised upwards and, despite the official limits, there are continuing reports that hundreds of cruise passengers have gone en masse to reefs, parks, or archeological sites; tour groups of 50 or more have been handled by a single guide.
There has been no scientific systematic monitoring of tourism impacts on protected areas and there are now indications of environmental damage, especially to the marine park.
And the problems are likely to get worse if current plans are fulfilled for more and bigger ships, somecapable of carrying 6000 each and new docking facilities capable of accommodating four ships at a time. If, however, arrival numbers continue to decline (as they are projected to do through at least 2007), this could mean some expansion plans are halted and Belize would have an opportunity to reassess its cruise tourism policies.
At the same time, some Belizeans who have invested in cruise tourism based on an expanding market, are likely to be financially hurt as numbers decline."
Edited by Jesse (04/02/07 06:04 PM)