Everglades National Park

Everglades National ParkThe fourth Climate Friendly Parks Workshop was held in at Everglades National Park in June, 2005. Prior land management decisions, coupled with rising sea level, have led to freshwater drainage, saltwater intrusion, and erosion in South Florida. Researchers with the Everglades restoration research and monitoring program note that sea level on Florida's southern coast has risen nine inches in the past century, six times faster than the per-century rate over the previous 2,400 years. Sea level rise is expected to accelerate as temperatures increase this century, causing greater storm surges and flooding. The effects could devastate the area, which is no higher than eight feet above sea level at any location.

As North America's only subtropical preserve, with 137 miles of coastline and the largest acreage of any national park east of the Rocky Mountains, Everglades NP is heavily traveled by marine and automotive vehicles transporting park visitors and staff. In an effort to curb the park's annual greenhouse gas and criteria air pollutant emissions, Everglades committed to reduce both the staff marine fleet and the staff automotive fleet (including equipment) by 20% at the end of 2005. Also, to reduce emissions and expose the public to alternative forms of transportation, the park will begin to transition the automotive fleet to include smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles and hybrid models. Additionally, Everglades NP has committed to integrating climate change education into its ongoing visitor outreach programs, with a goal of providing 100% of visitors to the park with the opportunity to be exposed to climate change issues.

The Everglades Criteria Air Pollutant (CAP) and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions Inventory was developed to provide an understanding of park emission sources and a baseline by which future emission reductions can be measured. The Everglades Climate Action Plan includes a summary of this inventory and identifies the strategies the park intends to implement in order to achieve these reductions.