The National Parks Conservation Association just released a report the stating 85% of U.S. national parks have levels of air pollution that are hazardous to human health. The air pollution is having a direct negative impact on sensitive species and habitats in 88% of parks. Nearly 90% of parks experience haze pollution including every single national park in the Lower 48 states. It’s estimates that on average, each visitor misses out on 50 miles of scenery due to haze (approximately 330 million people visit US National Parks yearly).
The Clean Air Program Director for the NPCA Stephanie Kodish had this to say about the chronic pollution in an interview with The Guardian:
“We are not doing right by the places that we most cherish. By protecting these places we are protecting each other, our communities and we are protecting the planet. I hope that people think about our national parks as bipartisan unifiers. That the connection to our national parks is one that can help preserve our future, our history, our culture. For the American people, they should serve as a reminder – and a warning cry.”
images from NPCA