Part 4: Reading for Viewpoints

Read the following article from a website.

Tourism British Columbia recently announced a plan to inject public dollars into promoting the rapidly growing travel niche of ecotourism. The province’s natural beauty attracts 20 million tourists annually. The government agency believes that number will soar if the province promotes ecotourism. The problem is deciding exactly where to channel those marketing and advertising dollars. The agency’s marketing coordinator, Mijung Park, says the plan, for now at least, is to sell British Columbia as a premier destination for kayaking. “Kayaking lets tourists experience British Columbia’s waterways without disturbing the surrounding ecosystems,” says Park. “Ocean and river kayaking are both highly marketable. Our agency's next step is deciding on questions of which and how.”

Business owner and tour guide Eric Ferland is making a push for the bulk of funds to be channeled into promoting established ocean kayaking businesses like his own, Kayak-O Inc. Ferland says amateur kayakers have long been drawn to the coastal waters and open sea, where the need to circumnavigate obstacles is nonexistent. “These river kayaking companies that have been popping up lately are promoting themselves as more of an 'extreme' sport, but ocean kayaking provides an equally exhilarating, yet less arduous, ecotourism excursion that spans a wide demographic, including older clientele,” says Ferland.

But River Adventures Ltd. owner Lars Norgaard suggests Ferland’s view ignores key differences in the two kayaking options. “River kayaks, in general, are designed for stability and maneuverability, as novice paddlers are often at the mercy of strong currents. We have clientele of all ages who want a more white-knuckle experience than what ocean kayaking can offer them. But any genuine fear subsides when clients discover that river navigation is straightforward, and nearby shores can be used as reference points.” According to Norgaard, his young company boasts an impressive number of first-time, one-off customers, thanks to its competitive pricing.

Asked about her agency’s future funding priorities, Park seems to imply that a rising tide will lift all boats. The decision, she insists, “needs to take into account the broad interests of the province, not the profits any individual enterprise stands to gain.”

Choose the best option according to the information given on the website.


The following is a comment by a visitor to the website page. Complete the comment by choosing the best option to fill in each blank.

My understanding, based on this article, is that Tourism British Columbia will be 6. __________ . I also get the distinct impression that if they 7. __________ the emerging market of river kayaking, companies like Ferland’s will struggle to survive. This would be unfortunate. As an avid ocean kayaker, I take exception to Norgaard’s insinuation that ocean kayaking lacks 8. __________ . I've paddled through all manner of ocean current and wave conditions. I agree with Ferland’s point that ocean kayaking requires 9. __________ . I do have to admit, though, that the owner of River Adventures has a point that his sport seems to attract many 10. __________ , which could boost ecotourism for the province.