National Park Service

Archana, Rabeed, Desiree, and Austin

Our Purpose

  • To preserve the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.

  • To celebrate the ongoing peace and goodwill among nations cooperating in a world of shared resources.


Land Management

We strive to preserve the land and keep things completely natural by letting the environment regulate itself without much human intervention.

Practices for Land Use

Our main practice is recreation and education. Most of our national parks are open to tourists and individuals looking for adventure. We do not participate in logging, deforestation, or any other form of habitat destruction.


  • Developing regional composting facilities
  • Operating alternatively-fueled vehicles

  • Implementing recycling programs
  • Replacing toxic solvents


Criticisms

  • Some critics believe that the NPS uses creative accounting and misleads the public about where the funding is being invested.
  • Scientists, whistle-blowers, policy critics, and history are often silenced from discussing policies, actions, and procedures of the NPS.

  • A public treasure does not inherently require governmental management. Public, nongovernmental trusts present sensible alternatives to federal management and reduce the chances of corruption.


Human Interaction and Park Service Goals

2016 marks the 100th anniversary of the NPS - we are preparing for a new century of stewardship and engagement!

stewardship and engagement!


  • We will extend our reach into places difficult to imagine 100 years ago—urban centers, across rural landscapes, oceans, and skies.
  • We will recommit to public enjoyment of the lands.

  • We will promote the contributions that national parks and our community assistance programs make to create jobs, strengthen local economies, and support ecosystem services.
  • We will integrate our mission across parks and programs and use their collective power and resources to expand our contributions to society.

How Much Land we Oversee

The system includes 408 areas covering more than 400 million acres. These areas include:



  • National parks
  • Monuments
  • Battlefields
  • Military parks
  • Historical parks and sites
  • Laskeshores and seashores
  • Recreation areas
  • Scenic rivers and trails
  • The White House

Laws and Policies

  • NPS Organic Act of 1916 - the NPS shall promote and regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations to conserve the scenery, natural and historic objects, and wildlife and to provide for the enjoyment of the present and future generations.
  • NPS General Authorities Act of 1970 - Congress declares that the national park system has grown to include superlative natural, historic, and recreation areas in every major region of the United States. These areas, though distinct in character, are united through their inter-related purposes and resources into one national park system as cumulative expressions of a single national heritage; individually and collectively, these areas derive increased national dignity and recognition of their environmental quality.

Where we are Located

The headquarters of the NPS are located in Washington, D.C. and the system covers all 50 states, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.
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UN International Categories

The NPS has joined the World Heritage Alliance, a partnership designed to engage the tourism industry and promote sustainable tourism at World Heritage Sites