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News for January 22, 2022

Summer Of Overcrowding Could Spur Push Of More National Parks

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Sen. Angus King believes there is one solution Congress can embrace, and that it’s to create more parks.

King, the chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on National Parks said that he plans to schedule a hearing on this subject in the next few months to encourage debate, a report said.

Any attempt to expand the park service’s size would be met with resistance.

Shawn Regan is vice president of research at Property and Environment Research Center, Bozeman, Mont. He said that it would be more sensible for Congress to concentrate on funding recreation on federal lands. This includes allowing federal agencies to raise higher fees.

The National Park Service currently oversees 423 sites. 15 percent, or 63, are classified as national parks. The agency manages over 85 million acres across all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and U.S. Territories, an area more than twice as large as Florida.

Rebranding NPS properties as national parks has been a popular trend in recent years. Many lawmakers see name changes as a way to increase tourism in their localities.

The COVID-19 pandemic caused park closures last year. However, this year parks from Maine to Montana are setting new records for visitation.

Yellowstone, the first national park in the country and the most visited, attracted more than 1,000,000 visitors in July. This was the highest monthly average in the park’s history of 149 years.

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Modern Campground

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