"In Mexico, Dive Tourism Is Worth as Much as Fishing"

"The surprising value of the country’s dive tourism industry gives another reason to protect its marine ecosystems."

"Mexico’s warm waters and diverse marine ecosystems make it a popular destination for divers from around the world. But with most dive tourism operations being mom-and-pop shops scattered across the country, nobody knew just how much money dive tourism was generating each year. Now, a new study finds that Mexico’s dive tourism industry is much, much larger than previously thought—pulling in as much revenue as the country’s industrial and artisanal fishing industries combined.

“The total value is surprising—even though it’s often not a surprise for the people who are living in these places,” says Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor, a resource economist at the University of British Columbia who was not involved in the research. “But when you see all the numbers added up, you go, Wow, this is huge.”

Based on surveys, the researchers estimated the dive tourism industry generates between US $455-million and $725-million annually, comparable to revenues generated by Mexico’s fishing industries."

Ilima Loomis reports for Hakai magazine June 10, 2021.

Source: Hakai, 06/10/2021