Application of Social Carrying Capacity to Sustainable Environment Planning: A Case Study of Coastal Community in Taiwan
Community development must aptly meet social needs in order to be sustainable. One such need, the psychological well-being of residents, is closely tied to the environmental quality of the community. In developing tourism, communities face the issue of impact on their environmental quality by influxes of visitors. Social carrying capacity is an important tool used in the environmental management of tourism areas to ensure the recreational quality. It is often assessed by visitors’ perception of crowding. Despite residents’ views being critical because their lives are directed impacted by the development of their community, no study has been conducted on residents’ crowding perception of their living environment. The characteristic of the environment is a key factor influencing crowding perception in addition to the use level. This study thus aims to examine residents’ crowding perception in reaction to various environmental characteristics in the community. ANOVA results indicate environmental characteristics carry a significant effect: at the same use level, natural and historical scenes were perceived to be more crowded than a recreational one. The findings help planners to better zone a community into multiple use areas based on residents’ crowding perception. In doing so, they can effectively minimize negative psychological impact on the residents, thereby protecting the environmental quality of a community.
Dongye Sun, Wen-Pei Sung and Ran Chen
S. L. Lei and H. Zhang, "Application of Social Carrying Capacity to Sustainable Environment Planning: A Case Study of Coastal Community in Taiwan", Applied Mechanics and Materials, Vols. 71-78, pp. 1925-1928, 2011