Going Green at Petroglyph National Monument

Visitor stands in parking lot and plugs in car to charging station
The National Park Service addresses climate change today because our choices make a difference. In 2016, Petroglyph National Monument installed the National Park Service’s first solar powered electric vehicle charging station so visitors and staff alike could charge their cars using direct sunlight. There are four charging stations available and free of charge to any visitor that has to charge up their electric vehicle.

The monument is also using solar lighting throughout the park near parking lots and walkways, recycles plastics and wood, has installed low flow plumbing features and low energy lighting, re-uses building materials, buys green cleaning products, and encourages ride sharing.

Climate change is real and it is important that we all use efforts to create a new way of using old to create new. The Las Imágenes Visitor Center, once the home of Dr. Sophie Aberle and William Brody, was purchased for use as the Petroglyph National Monument Visitor Center in 1991. This adaptive reuse of an adobe home created an instant place for visitors to learn about the monument’s resources. Shading of the patio and use of shade ramadas help keep the visitor center cool in the heat of the summer while the massing of the adobe structure historically keeps the temperatures warmer in winter. The amphitheater is made from rammed earth, reducing the amount of required concrete.
Las Imágenes Visitor Center
Sustainable landscaping adds beauty and helps maintain a special sense of place. The native vegetation planted in front of the Las Imágenes Visitor Center not only informs visitors about the traditional use of native plants by Native Americans and early Spanish settlers, but helps conserve water and minimizes weeding and mowing. The National Park Service seeks to maintain a natural landscape as much as possible. This effort works to ensure a successful stewardship by taking care of the resources for present and future generations.

Petrogyph National Monument staff do not use herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizers because of their impact on the natural environment. A drip watering system has been installed to help some plants survive long periods of drought. Other plants, especially those that have been here a long time, may experience damage by small animals, but that is part of the natural process.

Throughout the park, you will see recycling centers. We recycle plastic, aluminum, and glass. Recycling, along with proper disposal of food wastes and trash, can reduce litter and pest problems in the park. Using the easily identified recycling receptacles for waste will reduce the amount of garbage sent to the local landfills.