DESCRIPTION: Recreational use of our shared public lands is increasing exponentially. With that increased use comes increased impact. Though some of those impacts are unavoidable, most are entirely avoidable. The majority of people venturing outside are ill-equipped with the basic Leave No Trace skills to minimize their individual but cumulative impact on the places they visit. Join Ben Lawhon, Education Director for the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics to learn about how Leave No Trace is being used effectively to address impacts from recreation across the country. This presentation will examine the effects of recreation, and will also show how cutting-edge research is informing Leave No Trace education, outreach, and training. Lastly, the transferability of specific tactics for effectively educating the recreating public will be examined in order to provide tangible solutions for meeting the current challenges faced by our shared public lands.
• Understand what is leading to increased recreational use of public lands, and how recreation patterns are changing
• Know how Leave No Trace-focused research is being used to influence visitor behavior in parks and protected areas
• Identify solutions that local, state, and federal management agencies can use to better manage recreation-related impacts to public lands
Ben Lawhon, MS
Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics
Ben Lawhon MS, joined the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics staff in 2001 where he serves as the Education Director. His current responsibilities include research, curriculum development, management of national education and training programs, agency relations, and oversight of national outreach efforts. He has a B.S. in Natural Resources Management from the University of Tennessee and an M.S. in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources from Colorado State University. In his free time, Ben spends as much time outdoors as possible.