A New Model of Ecological Carrying Capacity for Developing Ecotourism in the Protected Area of the North Karkheh, Iran
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The carrying capacity is one of the most important tools used in planning natural areas for the sustainable development of ecotourism. For this purpose, the first step was to identify the effective factors in determining the ecological potentials and pressures affecting the ECC of ecotourism in the area. The network model between the effective factors was developed, and then, using the ANP model, PSR conceptual model, the region potentials and ECC were determined for the establishment of ecotourism in a scale of 1:50,000. In this research, the relative importance of effective factors in determining the region ecological potentials and pressures affecting the CC of the region was determined using a questionnaire and Delphi method. A total of 70 questionnaires were completed by qualified experts. Then, the physical CC and the ecological pressure levels of the area were calculated and the final map of the ECC was presented for the development of the ecotourism using WLC technique and the Builder model. The results of this study showed that 20% of the area has a high CC (544 ha), 52% of the area has an average CC (1407 ha) and 28% of the area has a low CC (746 ha).
KeywordsCarrying capacity Ecotourism Karkheh
The authors gratefully acknowledge the supports provided by Alvandi, the manager of Karkheh protected area, who helped us in writing this article.
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