The thought of National Parks echoes the sentiment of the great outdoors. People visit National Parks to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Visitors often camp, raft and participate in other outdoor activities, trying to enjoy the allegedly fresh air.
However, studies have found that pollution throughout national parks has reached the same level as the largest metro areas in the U.S. While this is extremely disconcerting, there is, finally, a breath of fresh air to combat this bad news.
According to a new study, the Grand Canyon National Park has the cleanest air. The average amount of days per year that a park has unhealthy levels of ozone is twenty-five. The Grand Canyon National Park has only nine of these days per year. More than that, there were a couple of years where there were no days that had unhealthy levels of ozone.
Besides the health concerns, the study could encourage more visitors to the Grand Canyon National Park. If other parks have worse air quality, people are going to migrate toward the park significantly less.
While this is good news for the Grand Canyon, the overall problem could pose an issue for the overall National Park attendants. Out of the 300 million visitors, National Parks receive per year, attendance drops most when air quality is poor. While this makes sense, if the air quality continues to worsen, fewer people are going to be visiting the parks overall. This could spell disaster for these natural landmarks.
Therefore, it is important for people to figure out how to help reduce the days of poor air quality. Even with all the environmental initiatives, though, the true solution has continued to evade us. Still, researchers are making progress.
This study alone gives a direction that can help researchers narrow down the solution. The study was created by attendants of Iowa State University and Cornell University. It was published Wednesday in Science Advances. This is a peer-reviewed journal from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Early speculation is hopeful this study could lead to more breakthroughs in saving our National Parks from an unhealthy ozone.