The blooming paradise: algae blooms, environmental change and tourism


  • Christer Foghagen Linnaeus School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University, SE39182 Kalmar, Sweden; phone: +46480497132; e-mail:



climate change, algae blooms, camping tourism


Tourism has become an important sector for many rural areas in Sweden. For the island Öland tourism is an important economic niche and along with agriculture, the backbone of the local economy. Island tourism systems can however, be vulnerable to environmental change. Algae blooms have repeatedly affected Baltic Sea coastlines in recent years, and destination planners in Öland reported losses of 27 million Euros for the season in 2005 alone. This article investigates related impacts on tourist decisions within the camping sector, through interrelationships of algae blooms, weather conditions, supply of camping facilities and distance to attractions outside the camping area. It goes on to evaluate how important camping visitors state these different factors to be for their choice of destination. The method used in this article is a stated preference where the respondents are requested to evaluate a number of hypothetical alternatives. The results show that camping is an important niche within Swedish summer tourism. However, high reliance on sea, sun and sand as the primary tourism product might be challenged by weather extremes, precipitation and biotic change in the future. Proactive strategies and adaptation strategies are important steps to take in order to mitigate potential negative impacts for the future.




How to Cite

Foghagen, C. (2014). The blooming paradise: algae blooms, environmental change and tourism. European Journal of Tourism Research, 7, 79–91.