National Geographic : 1967 Jan
"hard-wood," palm (Juaniaaustralis)-isse verely threatened; only 1,000 survive here. I could understand the temptation to cut them when I studied the chonta wood-starkly striped with grain of black and white. Laws now protect the wild chonta palms, and the Chilean Government has recently provided funds for two men to supervise the park. Officially, Chile has 18 other parks. One is Fray Jorge National Park, 310 miles north of Santiago-a desert-girt forest of great botani cal interest and well worth any nation's pride. "But others are 'parks' only on paper," a leading biologist told us. "We need to stake out realistic park boundaries, rewrite our laws, and enforce them." I come from the nation that exterminated the passenger pigeon and almost killed off the buffalo, so I hesitate to offer advice. Every nation, of course, must work out its own pat tern for conservation. The Japanese have devised multiple uses for their limited land. The Swiss provide field laboratories in the Alps for scientific research. Africans empha size game reserves. We North and South Americans, blessed with vast areas, go in strongly for wilderness and scenery. Whatever the style, most countries find that, indirectly, parks more than pay for them selves. Kenya is a case in point: Tourists at tracted by the lions and elephants leave about $25,000,000 there each year; annual park maintenance costs only $420,000. Furthermore, some analysts tell us that tourism is the world's fastest growing indus try. We have less than a decade to prepare airports, hotels, and other facilities for the era of supersonic jet airliners in the 1970's. To take advantage of such trends, the gov ernor of Robinson Crusoe Island wants to start with a hotel and improved transporta tion. Other thoughtful Chileans hope to work KODACHROME© N.G.S. Partners in conservation, Mr. and Mrs. Rockefeller, left, depart from Ushuaia, Argentina, the world's southernmost settlement large enough to be called a city. With them ride Mrs. Rockefeller's sister and brother-in-law, Elizabeth and Ethan Allen Hitchcock. As Chairman of the International Division of the Young Women's Christian Association of the United States, Mrs. Rockefeller found YW members "helping people of great need, with joy and real friendliness." Her husband, a world authority on protecting natural re sources, was impressed by South America's expanding commitment to conservation. Laurance S. Rockefeller served as Chairman of President Dwight D. Eisenhower's Out door Recreation Resources Review Commission. Currently he heads President Lyndon B. Johnson's Citizens Advisory Committee on Recreation and Natural Beauty and is Chair man of the New York State Council of Parks. Since 1957 Mr. Rockefeller has been a Trustee of the National Geographic Society.