Statement by NPCA Senior Southwest Regional Director David Nimkin
“The Valles Caldera National Preserve is an incredible cross-section of human history and impressive geological features, and, as a new economic report on the site released today states, with proper management by the National Park Service (NPS) it can be preserved for future generations while also providing an economic boon to local communities and New Mexico. The report from Caldera Action gives a detailed analysis in comparing the current private-public management of the site, which has failed to become sustainable, with multiple other scenarios. And, unsurprisingly to those of us who treasure historic and natural sites, the report determines that the background, expertise, and workforce of the NPS is best suited for both preserving the site and using it as an anchor of local economic growth.
“In addition to preventing incompatible uses from marring Valles Caldera’s incredible landscapes, the report shows that NPS management will make it more accessible to visitors and give a major boost to the local and New Mexico economy, including increasing economic benefits by more than $110 million in the first 15 years. The report also points out that NPS management will also be able to eliminate current administrative inefficiencies by consolidating the management of Valles Caldera National Preserve and the adjacent Bandelier National Monument.
“With human activity going back at least 11,000 years, a vibrant ecosystem and an impressive 12-mile-wide namesake caldera, it is obvious that Valles Caldera is an important piece in both the natural and human history of New Mexico and our nation and needs to be protected and preserved. And, the analysis outlined in today’s report makes a clear case for choosing the National Park Service to take over the management of this important site.”
About National Parks Conservation Association
Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its more than one million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s natural, historical, and cultural heritage for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.
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