Rocky Mountain National Park
The 10th Climate Friendly Parks workshop was held at Rocky Mountain National Park in March 2007. Located northwest of Denver in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, the alpine Park supports a host of wildlife including, elk, mule deer, moose, bighorn sheep, coyotes, black bears, cougars and hundreds of smaller animals. Climate Change threatens to alter the Park's apline ecosystems, which range from 8,000 feet in the wet, grassy valleys, to 14,259 feet at the weather-ravaged top of Longs Peak.
In 2005, Rocky Mountain National Park's GHG emissions totaled 3,540 metric tons of carbon equivalent (MTCE). The Park has committed to reduce these emissions to 17 percent below 2005 levels by the year 2017. Some of the strategies the park has identified include: developing and expanding the Park's shuttle system, replacing park vehicles with the best available technology, completing a full energy efficient lighting retrofit thoughout park buildings and developing a mandatory climate change training for Park staff.
Rocky Mountain National Park has also taken a leadership role on climate change education and outreach. The park plans to integrate climate change messaging into interpretive program and has set a goal of having 50% of park staff and 10% of park visitors participate in Do Your Part! for Climate Friendly Parks program by 2012.
Realizing that the Park will experience some of the impacts of climate change regardless of the actions that are taken now, the Park has also begun an active discussion about incorporating climate change impacts into long-term resource management strategies. The first step will be a workshop for area scientists and managers to identify species and ecosystems at risk.
The Rocky Mountain National Park Criteria Air Pollutant and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory was developed to provide an understanding of park emission sources and a baseline by which future emission reductions can be measured. The Rocky Mountain National Park Climate Action Plan, includes this inventory and identifies the strategies the park intends to implement in order to achieve these reductions.