Leave No Trace

“Leave No Trace” educational programs began in the 1960s when hiking, camping & backpacking became so popular public land was being “loved to death”.  Education was needed to minimize their impact.  In the early 70’s, The Boy Scouts of America started advocating Leave No Trace’s seven principals –  “Plan Ahead and Prepare, Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces, Dispose of Waste Properly, Leave What You Find, Minimize Campfire Impacts, Respect Wildlife, and Be Considerate of Other Visitors”.  National & State Parks, Wilderness Areas, and National Forests have all benefited from these principals.

It is up to us, as a community, to minimize our impact as we enjoy our local parks. Locally, Harley Park needs our help!  It always shows its wear after a busy weekend.  It’s a privilege to rent the pavilions and attend ballgames.  Trash cans and recycling bins for bottles & cans need to be better utilized.  Folks need to hit the right can in the first place – so help us spread the word!

The Environment needs Leave No Trace principles to thrive.  Industry continues to churn out a cacophony of chemicals while ravishing our natural resources with no thought about future generations.   US is the #1 trash-producing country in the world – 5% of the world’s people generating 40% of the world’s waste.  That’s a lot of “Trace”!!

How do we Reduce Trace?

Don’t Litter/Pick Up Litter

Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Minimize Chemicals Usage – Explore alternative “green” cleaning and weed killing options

Conserve Resources – Reuse, turn off lights, conserve water, insulation, etc.

Purchasing – Buy Locally, Organic, Products with recycled content, Energy efficient appliances and Support the Farmer’s Market; Avoid over packaged or disposable products and environmentally harmful products like Styrofoam

Transportation – Walk & Bike more; Carpool; Drive energy efficient cars

Energy – Invest in and Advocate clean renewable energy (solar, wind, biomass, geothermal) – these resources will never go away.  Non-renewable energy such as petroleum, coal, natural gas, and nuclear energy are finite and their by-products cause damage to the environment.

Get Involved – Educate others; Make your Vote count; Donate to and/or Join environmental organizations

Maybe this doesn’t seem that important.  After all, if we overlook litter and areas where pollution has taken its toll, most of our Earth is still quite beautiful.  Unfortunately, unless we act more responsibly, there will be less beauty for future generations to come.  If not for you, do it for the children.

Logo on top of page – www.lasallecouncilbsa.org

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