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    Author(s): Doug Whittaker; Bo Shelby; Robert Manning; David Cole; Glenn Haas
    Date: 2010
    Source: Marienville, PA: National Association of Recreation Resource Planners. 18 p.
    Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
    PDF: View PDF  (1.08 MB)

    Description

    In a world where populations and resource demands continue to grow, there is a long history of concern about the "capacity" of the environment to support human uses, including timber, rangelands, fish and wildlife, and recreation. Work on visitor capacities has evolved considerably since the late 1960s as a result of environmental planning, court proceedings, recreation management practice, and recreation research. This monograph documents the "state-of-knowledge" understanding of capacity among our group of long-term professionals, who represent a wide range of experience and perspectives. The first section defines capacity as "the amount and type of use that is compatible with the management prescription for an area," and elaborates on the elements of that definition. The main body of the monograph describes 34 agreements about the larger planning context, the definition of capacity, benefits of capacity, indicators and standards, and the roles of these concepts in resource planning and management. The third section identifies issues needing resolution, including four "differences we resolved" and five "differences that remain." This monograph is not the "final answer," and others will contribute to this on-going dialogue as agencies, the courts, academics, and resource professionals work to resolve capacity issues. We hope our work adds clarity, advances understanding, and encourages others to contribute their ideas.

    Publication Notes

    • You may send email to rmrspubrequest@fs.fed.us to request a hard copy of this publication.
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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    Whittaker, Doug; Shelby, Bo; Manning, Robert; Cole, David; Haas, Glenn. 2010. Capacity reconsidered: Finding consensus and clarifying differences. Marienville, PA: National Association of Recreation Resource Planners. 18 p.

    Keywords

    capacity, environment, human uses, visitor

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