You Can Buy a Trip to Anywhere on Earth. But Should You? What’s the Peril for the Planet in the Boom in Bucket-List Travel?
Ten years ago, there were five major cruise ships engineered to crush ice and explore the polar regions. By the end of next year, there will be more than 40. It’s a sign of the appeal of going-where-no-one-has-gone-before in travel right now, especially for the 1%, at whom most of these upscale luxe adventure boats are aimed. But what are the implications of this explosion in adventure cruising: just because we can go to the poles, should we? And when we do, how should we behave? There’s a bigger picture question here, too: as travel restarts in the pandemic’s wake, what are our responsibilities as well as our privileges? There’s a rumor that a five-star hotel is being mulled at the South Pole, hitherto a place unsullied by human settlement: is it ethically right to book a suite there when you can? And what about outer space, even: are there ethical, environmental issues in leaving the atmosphere? This panel will explore the tension between conservation and exploration piqued by the surge in luxury expedition travel.
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