Artificial reefs are increasingly used worldwide as a method for managing recreational diving since they have the potential to satisfy both conservation goals and economic interests.
Although there are negative impacts associated with mass diving tourism, scuba diving has the potential to generate substantial revenues. However, balancing the requirements of reef conservation with the needs of local host economies represents a considerable challenge to managers and policymakers.
The ecological role of shipwrecks as artificial reefs is well established and they are often prime and exclusive destinations for diving tourism. But they are also extremely delicate and sensitive environments.