The Choices We Make Affect Parks
When we burn fossil fuels for electricity, heating, transportation, food production, and other day-to-day activities, we release carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere. As this principal greenhouse gas has increased, it has caused global average temperatures to rise, similar to how a blanket traps in heat. Projections indicate these increases will continue, causing further changes and disruptions to the global climate and increasing risks to people, plants, and animals and special places like national parks. Emissions reduction—the limiting of CO2 and other greenhouse gas production from human activity—is an important step in addressing climate change. There are many simple actions agencies and individuals can take to reduce our daily carbon emissions.
Our choices make a difference. As an agency or an individual, we have opportunities to work toward a more sustainable future. National parks around the country are taking steps to reduce our carbon footprint. You can join us by getting involved at home, school, or work or during a visit to park.
Practicing green transportation strategies—at home or within a national park—is one of the easiest ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Everyone can do their part by driving more efficiently, reducing idling time, participating in climate-friendly commuting, using alternative fuels, or driving a higher-efficiency vehicle.
Choosing to make a difference does not necessarily mean giving up modern conveniences. There are lots of ways to help! Look for opportunities to help collect data that will be used to make decisions about managing resources, explore careers in climate change, or learn about personal choices that can make a difference. To learn more about the small steps and large strides parks are taking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, visit the NPS "My Green Parks" video page. You can also check out the Green Rides video below or view it on Youtube.
Transportation is a major source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions nationwide, contributing to climate change that affects national parks. The National Park Service has teamed up with Department of Energy, Clean Cities coalitions, and partners to reduce fuel use and GHG emissions. Join the National Park Service, partners, employees, neighbors and visitors to make a difference through sustainable travel.
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Last updated: September 16, 2020