Mammoth Cave National Park management and park staff have been awarded the 2019 Good Neighbor Environmental Achievement Award from the National Park Service (NPS). The award was given to the park for its environmental stewardship and commitment to partnerships at the local, state, national, and international levels. The partnerships cultivated by the park strive to facilitate important research of the park’s extensive caves and karst landscape while preserving both the park and surrounding communities.
“We are truly honored to be recognized by the park service for our Environmental Achievements at Mammoth Cave,” said Superintendent, Barclay Trimble. “We are especially honored to receive the ‘Good Neighbor’ award which is given to NPS teams and partners that demonstrate exceptional environmental accomplishments and acknowledges an achievement in supporting the NPS goal of the preservation, protection, and stewardship of environmental resources. We know we cannot accomplish this goal alone, so we work closely with many partners and organizations that help us all to be successful.”
The entire Mammoth Cave staff was recognized for outstanding achievement in environmental stewardship through their extensive partnerships with such groups as the Nature Conservancy, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife, Mammoth Cave Biosphere Reserve, Caveland Marketing Association, Cave Research Foundation, National Speleological Society, Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park in the Philippines, and numerous local stakeholders.
Western Kentucky University’s (WKU) Distinguished Professor of Hydrogeology and Director of the Crawford Hydrology Laboratory, Chris Groves, was one of the many partners who supported the award nomination. He said, "Although the history between WKU and Mammoth Cave stretches back more than century, since the 1980's there has been sustained and mutually beneficial progress in our partnership. WKU students and scientists have direct access to one of world's greatest cave laboratories, and the resulting research helps the park better understand, and thus protect, this global treasure."
Mammoth Cave National Park encompasses 52,830 acres in south central Kentucky, commemorating the diverse geological, biological and historical features associated with the longest cave in the world. The park was designated as a World Heritage Site in 1981 and became the core area of the Mammoth Cave Area International Biosphere Reserve in 1990.