March 18, 2018, Honolulu, Hawaii.
Carroll's guests are Curt Cotrell, Administrator of the Department of Land and Natural Resources' Division of Parks, Micah and Jonathan Doane, and John Auwae from Protectors of Paradise. They discuss social media and its impacts on our parks, natural resources, and cultural and historical sites. The safety of site visitors has become a concern after so many visitors have been found trespassing, ignoring laws and rules, or lost and needing rescue. Even Diamond Head has become a problem with so many people on the move. Visitors want to take selfies at places they see online. They hang locks on gates, and tag pill boxes and other landmarks. Culture isn't even considered, and nothing is sacred anymore. The only goal is to get the next picture.
Signs say, "keep out" and "do not go beyond this point", but, are often ignored. Unfortunately, rescues are very dangerous to responders, and are costly. Another side effect is an increase in car break-ins and vandalism.
The group discussion turns to whether anything can be done, and possible solutions to the problems. They suggest, maybe the carrying capacity of visitors to Hawaii has been exceeded. The Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) budget is huge, particularly when compared to the park system's budget. The panel talks about impacts on local sites and asks if such a huge HTA budget is really necessary. Maybe the HTA should spend more on educating the incoming tourists.
Link to DLNR's story about Curt Cotrell's appointment as Administrator for the DLNR Division of State Parks
Link to DLNR's website "About Our Parks"
Protectors of Paradise is on facebook. Link here to their page, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Link here to read about Protectors of Paradise in West Oahu Magazine.
Link here to our show of 10/29/17 featuring Protectors of Paradise.