The paper “ Canopy Walkways for Conservation - a Tropical Biologist’ s Panacea or Fuzzy Metrics to Justify Ecotourism" is a wonderful variant of the article on environmental studies. The increasing population in the world tends to increase the strain on the available resources. For example, in developing countries, people still depend on natural resources for sustenance (Clark & Poulsen, 2012). The result of this dependence is an increasing rate of depletion of these resources, including forests. Margaret Lowman evaluates the role of Canopy Walkways in the conservation of forest around the world.
This paper will summarize and comment on her article, ‘ Canopy Walkways for Conservation: A Tropical Biologist’ s Panacea or Fuzzy Metrics to Justify Ecotourism. ’ Past studies tended to concentrate on problem identification as opposed to finding solutions. For example, Margaret Lowman proposes that the process of research is judged based on the quality of a research paper (Lowman, 2009). Therefore, there is a need for more practical research in ecological studies. After the realization of the vital shortcoming, researchers sought to find methods with a deeper connection to the problem at hand.
For example, even after the extensive scientific research in the field, the rate of forest depletion continued to accelerate to reflect the rate of population growth (Lowman, 2009). Therefore, the main source of ecological destruction was determined to be the reliance of the local people on forest resources. For example, Margaret Lowman notes that despite the extensive knowledge about potential negative effects of the destruction of forests, the rate of destruction as been accelerating in many places around the world (Lowman, 2009). The implication of the continued destruction is that it is not enough to identify potential problems; there is a need for the provision of sustainable sources of income for locals to reduce their reliance on forest resources.
One of the alternative income sources has been proposed to be eco-tourism. Margaret Lowman pinpoints canopy walkways as one of the methods used to generate income from tropical rainforests while preserving their integrity (Lowman, 2009). These walkways serve a multitude of purposes. For example, they serve academic as well as aesthetic purposes. However, Lowman proposes that these measures are not as successful as they are proposed to be.
For example, the walkways operate together with other businesses and their contribution to revenue is impossible to determine. However, the biggest problems associated with the proposed projects are their minimal benefits to the local populations (Lowman, 2009). For example, the projects attract the attention of international investors who tap into business opportunities because they have the ability to invest. Therefore, these projects do not benefit the locals as they were intended to. The result is that depletion of forest resources is bound to increase further unless a new method of generating income that is beneficial to the local people is introduced.
However, the presence of the canopy walkways is beneficial to ecological specialists because it offers a better platform on which to study tree canopies. For example, information about tree canopies is an important tool in tourism because it appeals to visitors (Lowman, 2009). Therefore, the canopy walkways are an important element in creating awareness about the forestry situation in the world today. In conclusion, construction of walkways has served a variety of functions in the conservatory efforts.
For example, the information collected from studies conducted on these walkways attracts further attention to the depletion of resources. However, it is not possible to measure the economic contributions of these walkways to the local people (Clark & Poulsen, 2012). However, the involvement of outside investors reduces their value to the local people and thus dilutes their conservation purposes.