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Protecting Night Skies and Naturally Dark Conditions in National ParksAuthor(s): Frank Turina
Source: In: Gobster, Paul H.; Smardon, Richard C., eds. Visual resource stewardship conference proceedings: landscape and seascape management in a time of change. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-183. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 186-200.
Publication Series: Paper (invited, offered, keynote)
Station: Northern Research Station
PDF: Download Publication (325.0 KB)
DescriptionThe field of visual resource stewardship has historically focused on assessments of visual quality and impacts to daytime scenery. In recent years, increasing numbers of visitors have been traveling to National Parks to participate in nighttime recreation and astronomy-based park programming. In many parks, nighttime programs have become some of the most popular ranger-led activities and visitors have come to expect superlative nighttime views of starry skies and park landscapes just as they do during the day. However, development of frameworks, methods, and protocols for assessing nighttime visual resources have yet to emerge from the field. This paper discusses the importance of night skies and naturally dark environments and presents an approach developed by the National Park Service (NPS) to measure night sky quality and the photic environment in parks. The approach adopted by NPS can serve as a starting point for developing methods for effective visual resource stewardship at night.
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CitationTurina, Frank. 2018. Protecting Night Skies and Naturally Dark Conditions in National Parks. In: Gobster, Paul H.; Smardon, Richard C., eds. Visual resource stewardship conference proceedings: landscape and seascape management in a time of change. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-183. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 186-200.
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