National Park Service funds studies of Colorado night skies
Dr. Terrel Gallaway, acting department head of economics, and Dr. David Mitchell, associate professor of economics at Missouri State University, received a grant from the National Park Service for $22,000 for their project “Estimating the Potential Value of the Night Skies above the Colorado Plateau.”
Gallaway and Mitchell will be investigating the value of the night sky with regard to tourism in the Colorado Plateau region. The area has many national parks and monuments and it also has very dark, clear skies. One of the things that some park visitors, and others, enjoy is the chance to see skies free from light pollution.
“Dark nights are a fundamental part of the natural environment, yet are severely threatened by light pollution,” said Gallaway. “This light pollution does substantial damage to wildlife, aesthetics and human health. Increasingly, remote locations, such as much of the Colorado Plateau, are the only places wildlife and humans can find naturally dark night skies.”
Through this project, the team hopes to give communities a better idea of whether or not protecting and promoting dark skies will help promote tourism.
For more information, contact Gallaway at (417) 836-5629.
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College of Humanities and Public Affairs
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