Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study Shows Attendance At State Parks Grows, Even As Funding Decreases

17.03.2011
A recent study from North Carolina State University shows that while the number of visits to state parks across the country has grown, fund support for park operations has been significantly reduced. The reduction in funding during a time of park growth endangers the more than $20 billion in economic impact that state parks have on the nation’s economy.

“Obviously the reduction in general-fund support for operations puts stress on America’s state-park systems,” says Dr. Yu-Fai Leung, NC State associate professor of recreation ecology, park planning and visitor management, and director of the study.

“This is a troubling trend since states rely heavily on outdoor recreation and tourism spending to fuel local economies. The public has high expectations of state parks and the facilities and programs offered. If the state parks don’t meet expectations, visitors will likely take their business elsewhere.”

Leung, alongside fellow NC State researcher Chris Siderelis, completed the Annual Information Exchange (AIX) report, which tabulates data on state park attendance and economic impact, for the National Association of State Park Directors.

State parks nationally are generating a nine-fold return on their annual operating investment during difficult economic times. Many private- and public-sector jobs depend on the vitality of public parks; placing them at risk only aggravates the economic stress on state economies, Leung says. Total operating expenditures for state parks from all sources add up to about $2.2 billion, the report asserts. State general funds represent about $810 million of that $2.2 billion.

State parks operated 1,257 new areas, or more than 23,800 acres, over the previous year. “What that means is they have more land, facilities and visitors at a time when budget cuts are in double digits,” Leung explains. “It is unlikely that any private-sector business would cut expenditures when visitation and economic impact are growing. The prudent business plan would be to have stable or increased funding during periods of growth to protect the increasing market share.”

The AIX report shows that visitation to America’s state parks has grown from about 727 million visits in 2009 to more than 740 million in 2010 – a 1.6 percent increase. During the same period, general-fund support for park operations was reduced by $114 million or about 12.3 percent. Day-use visitation to state parks increased by more than 17 million or 2.6 percent while overnight visits dropped from 64 to 60 million. “The price of gasoline and pressure on household budgets are likely reasons for the 5.3 percent reduction in overnight visits,” Leung says.

Researchers are currently conducting statistical analyses on the AIX data to identify patterns and trends about state park use and operations.

NC State’s Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism Management is part of the university’s College of Natural Resources.

Caroline Barnhill | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ncsu.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: LaserTAB: More efficient and precise contacts thanks to human-robot collaboration

At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.

Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fraunhofer ISE Pushes World Record for Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells to 22.3 Percent

25.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Usher syndrome: Gene therapy restores hearing and balance

25.09.2017 | Health and Medicine

An international team of physicists a coherent amplification effect in laser excited dielectrics

25.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>