Modern day tourism—mainly in the form of massive, fuel-guzzling cruise ships—requires a critical evaluation, and this is done in this blog post in World Policy Blog:
In examining the impact of large-scale tourism in the Arctic, it is clear that “discovering” the polar region may come at a steep price. By polluting the environment and depleting valuable local resources, many forms of Arctic cruise tourism contribute to the destruction of the region’s exceptional wilderness and the alteration of cultural dimensions of local life (specifically, the Inuit hunting culture).
As the cruise industry continues to thrive in the region, we must address its impact and create better alternatives to its environmentally damaging and at times, culturally insensitive practices. While a few cruise ship companies have already started this process, such as Quark and Inuit-owned Cruise North Expeditions, others continue to pose threats to the region.