Title

Wilderness non-use values and environmental justice in the north Georgia Appalachians

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

5-1-2005

Abstract

The study proposes a framework and methodology for investigating the environmental justice implications of the Eastern Wilderness Act (Public Law 93-622) in the context of wilderness non-use values. Census block groups and wilderness areas in the north Georgia portion of the southern Appalachians were mapped using geographic information systems, and the straight-line distances from the census block group centroids to their nearest wilderness area centroid were calculated. These distances were then analyzed as a dependent variable, along with socioeconomic independent variables, using multiple regression analysis (n = 718, p < .05). Results identified two groups living near north Georgia wilderness areas: (1) a white, low-income population and (2) a retired, higher-income population. Additionally, the area may be attracting second, or vacation, homeowners. There is not a strong minority presence near these wilderness areas. Implications of the area as retirement and vacation destinations are discussed in the context of possible effects on the low-income white population. Implications for minorities not living near wilderness areas are also addressed. © 2005 National Association of Environmental Professionals.

Publication Name

Environmental Practice

Volume Number

7

First Page

108

Last Page

123

Issue Number

2

DOI

10.1017/S1466046605050143

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