Quoted by the National News Agency Antara, former Minister of Tourism, Post and Telecommunications, Joop Ave, says the people must preserve the environment if the tourism sector is to be sustained.
Elaborating with specific emphasis on Bali, Ave said: "As well as protecting its culture, Indonesia must also guard its natural environment, especially on the island of Bali Ė all of which are the cornerstone of tourism."
Speaking at the opening of the Nusa Dua Fiesta 2009, Ave said that both domestic and international tourists travel to Bali to not only experience the island's culture but to also see its natural environment. The popular former minister in charge of Indonesia's tourism warned: "I hope the people of Bali can protect the natural environment, including the ocean's ecosystem. If these are destroyed (our) tourism will be abandoned by visitors."
Ave went on to praise the organizers of the Nusa Dua Fiesta 2009 for adopting "Green Tourism" and "Protecting the Oceans and Sea shores" as this year's theme for the event; signifying Nusa Dua's commitment to maintain Bali as a world class tourism destination. "This theme invites us to show our concern and preserve the ocean's ecosystem. The ocean eco-system of Bali is one of the major attractions of Bali's sea-based tourism," added Ave.
Continuing, Ave said, "tourists who snorkel or go diving in Bali are able to enjoy the biosphere of Bali's oceans." Saying God has bestowed the rich oceans surrounding island on Bali, this fact demands that we cooperate to safeguard and preserve our season."
Thinking locally and acting globally, Ave reminded: "The efforts to protect and preserve the coral reef can help slow the rate of global warning, because the ocean's ecosystem is able to absorb carbon dioxide."
The opening of the Nusa Dua Fiesta 2009 was attended by various government officials, including Joop Ave and former Culture and Tourism Minister I Gde Ardika who help place an artificial reef in the waters off Nusa Dua.
[Nusa Dua Fiesta XIII 2009]
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