University Presentation Showcase: Graduate Division

Project Title

Seeing Stars: The Implications From Losing the Night Sky In and Around Daniel Boone National Forest

Presenter Hometown

Richmond

Major

Masters in Recreation and Park Administration

Department

Recreation and Park Administration

Degree

Graduate

Mentor

Brian G. Clark, Ed.D.

Mentor Department

Recreation and Park Administration

Abstract

Daniel Boone National Forest has many unique opportunities for people who want their ‘Nature’ to include a night sky full of stars and with the rise of dark sky tourism it is incumbent upon the populous to invest in that future. Moreover, it is in our biophilic nature to seek and protect places that offer such unique and irreplaceable connections to the natural world. While there have been many ecological studies on the deleterious effects of light pollution on the environment little work has been done to quantify the economic impacts on the travel and tourism industry. Some of the recreation opportunities directly affected are fishing, hunting, camping, astronomy, photography, stargazing, and, of course, the ability to visit one of only two reliably predictable moonbows in the world at Cumberland Falls. The latter is quickly losing its dark skies due to radiant light from the surrounding cities and this inconvenient truth should be no surprise given that light pollution is increasing at double the rate of global population growth. The purpose of my poster is to inform the general public about Daniel Boone National Forest’s unique place in the tourism industry, increase awareness of the threat to travel and tourism in the state of Kentucky, and explore potential avenues to mitigate and reverse the damage done by unchecked light pollution.

Presentation format

Poster

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Seeing Stars: The Implications From Losing the Night Sky In and Around Daniel Boone National Forest

Daniel Boone National Forest has many unique opportunities for people who want their ‘Nature’ to include a night sky full of stars and with the rise of dark sky tourism it is incumbent upon the populous to invest in that future. Moreover, it is in our biophilic nature to seek and protect places that offer such unique and irreplaceable connections to the natural world. While there have been many ecological studies on the deleterious effects of light pollution on the environment little work has been done to quantify the economic impacts on the travel and tourism industry. Some of the recreation opportunities directly affected are fishing, hunting, camping, astronomy, photography, stargazing, and, of course, the ability to visit one of only two reliably predictable moonbows in the world at Cumberland Falls. The latter is quickly losing its dark skies due to radiant light from the surrounding cities and this inconvenient truth should be no surprise given that light pollution is increasing at double the rate of global population growth. The purpose of my poster is to inform the general public about Daniel Boone National Forest’s unique place in the tourism industry, increase awareness of the threat to travel and tourism in the state of Kentucky, and explore potential avenues to mitigate and reverse the damage done by unchecked light pollution.