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Should National Parks have Restricted Access?

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Introduction

Should National Parks have Restricted Access? Each year 10's of millions of people enjoy the national parks across the United Kingdom. But these people are causing irreversible damage to the areas. With the tourists come pollution crime and traffic, but also money, jobs and secures the livelihood of many people. Out of the 221/2 million people that visit the Peak District every year. Causing conflict with local residents and the environment. 95% of them go by car with only 5% using public transport. The cars bring pollution, readings taken in the park show that in some cases there is more pollution in the park then in central London. They also bring congestion meaning that at peak times there can be almost complete gridlock. The old roads of the Peak District were not designed to cope with all of the traffic and are now unable to cope. ...read more.

Middle

There are already Park and Ride schemes in operation in some parks but these have had limited success. It still means people parking somewhere unless there are good transport links. For it to work properly it would have to be a lot more expensive to drive your car then use Park and Ride. There are new road schemes that prioritise roads, which makes it easier for people to pick what roads to go on, but this just spreads the traffic problems out and doesn't solve it. In certain areas of parks 'Honey pots' have grown up meaning large amounts of people converge on a certain place. These areas exacerbate the problems mentioned above. You could try building or upgrading certain areas to create new 'honey pots' but although this may relieve some of the pressure off other areas it may just move it or encourage more people to visit the area. ...read more.

Conclusion

Entrance is free allowing anybody with a car to visit with buses available for those who haven't. It allows people to see wildlife and different species of plants and take part in programs such as the Duke of Edinburgh Award. All the visitors though are eroding footpaths meaning that 10% of the 3000km of paths are unusable. Bikes cause lots of the damages though. If special cycle networks were created with a harder but natural looking surfaces and people adhered to these areas people could enjoy these areas with minimal effect on the environment. I think that access to the parks should be restricted by way of a charge for entering it. But the money raised should only be used for benefiting the lives of the locals and tourists. Such as improving the transport situation by using more Park and Ride schemes building new car parks, which would also benefit local people and improving the facilities for tourist such as improving the routes. ...read more.

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