Greening our Park
December 13, 2012
Several members of our park staff recently completed an Environmental Management System workshop, which is a snoozy bureaucratic way of saying that we are revving up our focus on sustainability here at Klondike Gold Rush NHP. A fun part of the training was making a list of what the park has already done to be more environmentally responsible, which turned out to be a pretty hefty list. You can find it on our new Sustainability page.
Our new Environmental Management Plan is part of the National Park Service's effort to be a model of sustainable management. As the keepers of many of America's greatest treasures, both natural and cultural, we have many reasons to care for those treasures in ways that will encourage the health of the nation's citizens and ecosystems. There's more information available about the Green Parks Plan, success stories from different parks, and more fun videos available at http://www.nps.gov/greenparksplan/.
Klondike Gold Rush NHP cares for both cultural and natural resources, so our environmental management plan has include a wide range of strategies, from reusing historic building materials for restorations to identifying ways to reduce waste generated on the Chilkoot Trail. In the next year, we are planning on improving our recycling program, decreasing the park's chemical inventory, replacing two fuel-oiled boilers with electric boilers, and developing a more robust green purchasing program. Some of these actions may not be the most glamorous undertakings, but they will add up to a significant difference in our impact on the land, air and water. We'll keep you posted on our progress!
Here's an environmental holiday treat from our Maintenance Crew - a tree made entirely from scaffolding, hung with LED lights. It sits outside our curation office at 4th and Broadway, and is a delightful addition to our long Skagway winter nights. It's proof-positive that being environmentally responsible can also be a bucket of fun! Check out their timelapse show as well!
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Did You Know?
No gold was ever found in the Skagway River valley. The actual gold fields were approximately 550 miles north, near the junction of the Klondike and Yukon Rivers in Dawson City. Skagway became known as the gateway to the Klondike gold fields, a bustling supply town.