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The Effect of Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events on Tourism

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Author Info

  • Andrea Bigano

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Alessandra Goria

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Jacqueline Hamilton

    (Hamburg University and Centre for Marine and Atmospheric Science)

  • Richard S.J. Tol

    (Hamburg University, Vrije Universiteit and Engineering and Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University)

Abstract

Tourism is an industry of primary importance for the world economy. For some countries, tourism is the first source of income and foreign currency, and many local economies heavily depend on tourism. Tourists are sensitive to climate and to climate change, which will affect the relative attractiveness of destinations and hence the motive for international tourists to leave their country of origin. Yet, until recently, the attention devoted by the tourism literature to climate change and by the climate change literature to tourism has been quite limited. This paper is divided in two parts. The first part reviews the literature on the relationship between climate change and tourism. We find that the existing studies have but started unveiling the complexities of this relationship, by means of very heterogeneous approaches and scarcely comparable studies. A comprehensive, coherent quantitative message cannot yet be drawn from the literature. The broad qualitative message is clear, however: climate change will affect tourism, and the consequences for the economy might be wide and pervasive. The second part analyses empirically the relationship between climate characteristics, weather extremes and domestic and international tourism demand across Europe, with a focus on Italy. This study draws on the results on the Italian tourist sector of the WISE project, a multi-sector research project that investigates the impacts of extreme weather events on the socio-economic systems of some European countries by means of both quantitative and qualitative analyses. In general, temperature is the strongest indicator of domestic tourism. The relationship between tourism and temperature is generally positive in the same-month all across Europe, except in winter sports regions. The climate impact depends as well on destination type: for example coastal resorts respond more favourably to summer temperature increases than inland resorts. Moreover, it is not just temperature that counts, but also the expectations about future temperature levels; not just the presence of weather extremes, but also the expectations about their future occurrence. Qualitative results, based on individual surveys, show that during an unusually hot summer day trips are more climate-responsive than short breaks, that short breaks are more climate-responsive than main holidays, and that most people tend not to change plans for their main vacation: those that do change either stay at home or in their own country. On the basis of our literature survey and of our empirical study’s results, the paper concludes by indicating the most urgent gaps to be filled in the knowledge about the relationship between climate change and tourism and by pointing at the most promising directions for further research.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei in its series Working Papers with number 2005.30.

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Date of creation: Feb 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2005.30

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Keywords: Tourism; Climate change; Extreme weather events;

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References

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  1. Andrea Bigano & Maria Berrittella & Roberto Roson & Richard S.J. Tol, 2004. "A General Equilibrium Analysis of Climate Change Impacts on Tourism," Working Papers 2004.127, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  2. Marzio Galeotti & Alessandra Goria & Paolo Mombrini & Evi Spantidaki, 2004. "Weather Impacts On Natural, Social And Economic System (WISE) Part II: Individual Perception of Climate Extremes in Italy," Working Papers 2004.32, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  3. Jacqueline M. Hamilton & David J. Maddison & Richard S.J. Tol, 2003. "Climate Change And International Tourism: A Simulation Study," Working Papers FNU-31, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Sep 2003.
  4. Jacqueline M. Hamilton, 2004. "Climate and the Destination Choice of German Tourists," Working Papers 2004.21, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  5. Andrea Bigano & Jacqueline M. Hamilton & Maren A. Lau & Richard S.J. Tol & Zhou Yuan, 2004. "A Global Database Of Domestic And International Tourist Numbers At National And Subnational Level," Working Papers FNU-54, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Nov 2004.
  6. Jacqueline M. Hamilton & David J. Maddison & Richard S.J. Tol, 2004. "The Effects Of Climate Change On International Tourism," Working Papers FNU-36, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Jan 2004.
  7. Panayiota Lyssiotou, 2000. "Dynamic analysis of British demand for tourism abroad," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 25(3), pages 421-436.
  8. Jeffrey Englin & Klaus Moeltner, 2004. "The Value of Snowfall to Skiers and Boarders," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 29(1), pages 123-136, September.
  9. Claudio Piga, 2003. "Pigouvian Taxation in Tourism," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 26(3), pages 343-359, November.
  10. Andrea Bigano & Jacqueline M. Hamilton & Richard S.J. Tol, 2004. "The Impact Of Climate On Holiday Destination Choice," Working Papers FNU-55, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Oct 2004.
  11. Witt, Stephen F. & Witt, Christine A., 1995. "Forecasting tourism demand: A review of empirical research," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 447-475, September.
  12. Richardson, Robert B. & Loomis, John B., 2004. "Adaptive recreation planning and climate change: a contingent visitation approach," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1-2), pages 83-99, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Francesco Bosello & Enrica De Cian, 2013. "Climate Change, Sea Level Rise, and Coastal Disasters. A Review of Modeling Practices," Working Papers 2013.104, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  2. Mattia Cai & Roberto Ferrise & Marco Moriondo & Paulo A.L.D. Nunes & Marco Bindi, 2011. "Climate Change and Tourism in Tuscany, Italy. What if heat becomes unbearable?," Working Papers 2011.67, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  3. Johanna Forster & Peter Schuhmann & Iain Lake & Andrew Watkinson & Jennifer Gill, 2012. "The influence of hurricane risk on tourist destination choice in the Caribbean," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 114(3), pages 745-768, October.
  4. Moore, Winston R. & Harewood, Leandra & Grosvenor, Tiffany, 2010. "The Supply Side Effects of Climate Change on Tourism," MPRA Paper 21469, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Jaume Rosselló Nadal, 2009. "The impact of the NAO index on European Airline Transit," CRE Working Papers (Documents de treball del CRE) 2009/5, Centre de Recerca Econòmica (UIB ·"Sa Nostra").

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