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National Park Service Survey: Would I pay for cleaner air?

Discussion in 'Energy, Environment, and Policy' started by Rob_B, Jun 21, 2017.

  1. Rob_B

    Rob_B Member

    Jun 17, 2016
    Did I already know there's a problem? Do I care? And would I pay to fix it? The National Park Service wants to know!

    And they decided they want my inputs regarding fixing the hazy and dirty air at national parks and wilderness areas. I believe I was picked at random. I'm guessing that this is at least partly in response to threatened budget cuts, but that wasn't stated. My survey addressed national parks in Washington and Oregon, but perhaps it was tailored to each region.

    So, I have a couple of questions:

    Did anyone else receive one of these?

    Is theirs a too-simplistic way of framing possible solutions: Would I pay a little for a slight improvement, a lot for a slight improvement, a little for a substantial improvement, or a lot for a big improvement? That's what it all came down to, if I read the questions correctly.

    I wonder if a better way of suggesting the choices we face as taxpayers might be to ask whether we'd be willing to accept cultural changes, like switching to electric vehicles and solar power? Or maybe constraining air travel?

    Might be time for me to write some letters to my elected representatives in support of our parks!
    • Like x 1
  2. nwdiver

    nwdiver Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2013
    United States
    At the very least.... the VERY VERY least. EVERY national park should have NEMA 14-50 outlets in their parking lot. It's 2017... WTF!
    • Like x 2
    • Love x 1
  3. Merrill

    Merrill Active Member

    Jan 23, 2013
    Sonoma, California
    In California they cannot even keep the parks open without volunteers and donations, where are all the billions going that they collect. They keep raising taxes and fees for everything, someone is getting rich.
  4. Wumple

    Wumple Member

    Jan 7, 2017
    I personally have not recieved a questionaire. I agree about every National Park having a bare minimum of level 2 chargers. Installing Level 2+ chargers is completely in their purview of protecting the local environment, and will prepare themselves for the near future when electric cars become more prevalent. In this vein i put together a petition for electric charging stations in All National Parks. Not to hijack the thread but I would appreciate any feedback and signatures.

    Petition for charging stations in all National Parks
  5. tander

    tander Active Member

    Jul 23, 2012
    I'm kind of surprised Tesla or someone else hasn't done a charging deal with national parks, it seems like it would've been a natural free advertising opportunity, but then again camping probably isn't priority for most model s owners, maybe when the electric micro buses start coming out.

    I didn't receive the questionnaire, but I would pay a little bit extra. I pay a little bit extra to buy "clean power" from my utility, which I think they buy green credits or something, and unfortunately it's not something that they can do on a scale or if every customer suddenly signed up it would be available(that's my understanding at least ). But it really doesn't cost a noticeable amount more so I figure why not?
  6. TexasEV

    TexasEV Well-Known Member

    Jun 5, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Someone did:
    Multi-Year Partnership Supports Technology and Expands Sustainable Travel in America’s National Parks

    I haven't read about any being installed yet after the first one at the Edison museum.
    • Like x 1
  7. cpa

    cpa Active Member

    May 17, 2014
    Central Valley
    This is speculation on my behalf.

    I spoke with an assistant superintendent at a national park a few years back about this very thing. He personally was unclear on the concept of having something like EV chargers installed at his park. "Amenities" were not his specialty.

    The popular national parks all have concessionaires to provide all non-park related services and sales. These concessionaires sign contracts with the NPS to pay the Service a royalty or other cut from the gross sales of the sales and services. I suspect that these contracts do not specifically provide for electric vehicle charging.

    This may be one of those areas where the responsibility for installation, maintenance and utility charges is unclear. There is likely not a lot of money to be made by the concessionaire on selling electricity, and in states where non-utilities cannot charge by the electrical unit, billing gets harder. I do not think that this service is high on the list of amenities for the concessionaire. When EVs become more popular and we citizens demand charging stations, then the park service and their concessionaire will come to terms with this and we will get them.
  8. dgpcolorado

    dgpcolorado high altitude member

    Apr 25, 2015
    The Western Slope, Colorado
    #8 dgpcolorado, Jun 27, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2017
    Your post got me to thinking about where a good location would be for charge stations. If they are L2, as I assume would be the most likely case, they need to be somewhere that one is going to park for a long time. That works great in Zion National Park because during most of the season all access to Zion Canyon, the most heavily visited section of the park, is by shuttle bus. So, the huge visitor's center parking lot has a couple of EVSEs ($5 for three days use) and the adjacent campground has TT-30 outlets at many campsites. This works well for Zion because people park there for the day and then hop on a shuttle bus to explore Zion Canyon and its many trails. The hotel in the park also has L2 charging, another good fit because it can be used overnight by guests.

    However, at most national parks that I've visited, one explores the park by car and one typically doesn't spend hours in one spot. Would L2 charging be all that useful in such a situation? I could see the utility of campgrounds with RV pedestals, where electrical service is available. And at hotels in the park, in the handful of cases where they exist. But is charging at, say, a visitor's center useful? How long does one usually spend at one? I've been known to park at the visitor's center at Arches NP and then bicycle into the park, but I can assure you that I am something of an outlier in using a bicycle to visit a national park. (Also, Arches has a Supercharger Station just a couple of miles away, making L2 charging unnecessary, for Teslas at least.)

    So, my question: where would it actually be useful to have charge stations in most national parks?

    Model S at campsite Zion NP1680sf 6-9-16.jpg

    Model S at campsite Zion NP1683sf 6-10-16.jpg
    ^ Charging on TT-30 at a Zion National Park campsite.

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