Hot Topics     Home and Family     Family Fun    

Camp Sustainably This Summer



Lessen your impact on the planet with these tips

Lessen your impact on the planet with these tips


DEC's 56 campgrounds and Day Use areas are open to the public. Reservations for the 2021 camping season are at an all-time high, as more New Yorkers and visitors from out of state prepare to head outdoors to take advantage of recreational opportunities.

Camping is a great way to enjoy some relaxing time in nature and is a perfect time to think about how we can lessen our impact on the planet. Below are some simple tips you can use to ensure your next camping trip is a sustainable one (and may make packing and cleanup easier, a great bonus!). Whether you are new to camping or an old pro, there are always ways to improve your sustainability efforts and help preserve our beautiful places for years to come!

  • Use Reusable Plates, Utensils, and Bottles: Cut down on waste and save money with reusable products. Single-use plates, utensils, and bottles take up extra space in your bags and in our landfills. Most of our facilities now have sinks for washing dishes, as well as potable water for refilling reusable bottles.
  • Rent or Borrow: Find used gear instead of buying new items. Done using your camping gear? If it’s still usable, ask if the facility collects it, or drop it off at a donation center on your way home.
  • Bring Solar Power: Using solar-powered lights, radios, and chargers is an easy, renewable energy source that reduces your need for extra batteries and keeps you connected while camping.
  • Recycle: When you arrive at the camping site, check what materials are recyclable at the facility and separate recyclables during your trip. Some items should never be put in the recycling bins.
  • Buy Local Firewood: Help stop the spread of invasive pests--and save trees--by following the New York State Firewood Regulation. Check out DEC's website for more information on where to buy local firewood.
  • Don’t Burn Trash: Don’t throw plastic cups, food wrappers, or other trash into a campfire. Plastics release toxic smoke and could pollute the ground and nearby waters.
  • Carpool: Travel with your friends and family in one vehicle instead of taking separate vehicles to decrease carbon emissions. Also, check out New York’s expanding network  of electric vehicle (EV) chargers, which are making camping with an EV more practical than ever before.

Want more tips? Check out DEC’s sustainable camping video on their YouTube page. You can also learn more on DEC's website about how to camp and pack sustainably (PDF).




Other articles by HVP News Reporters


  • View eagles in Mongaup

    Mongaup Valley Wildlife Management Area designated a Bird Conservation Area

    Mongaup was designated a Bird Conservation Area because of its unique combination of habitats important to bird species. read more »
  • Hike Smart & Be Prepared

    Safety tips for getting out in the winter months

    NYS DEC offers tips to keep you and your family safe while enjoying the outdoors this winter. read more »
  • Hudson Highlands Nature Museum’s Homeschool Naturalist Program

    Adventure Awaits Students Ages 6-9

    The Hudson Highlands Nature Museum’s Homeschool Naturalist Program for children ages 6-9 has quickly become one of the Nature Museum’s most beloved programs. Originally created out of the needs of families undertaking distance/learning, the program has proved so popular it has remained in place by demand. read more »
  • 5 ways parents can get prepared for student loan repayments

    Tips to help you survive student loan payments

    If you’re a parent who took out a federal student loan for your child and you’ve been taking advantage of the payment freeze as part of the COVID-19 emergency relief, then things are about to change. Starting January 31, 2022, payments will resume and no further extensions are expected. read more »
  • STEAM learning toys for your little ones

    Young kids have fun while learning letters and numbers

    Edx Education teaches letters and numbers through hands-on play read more »
  • DCP offers tips to help New Yorkers stay safe and warm

    NYS Division of Consumer Protection warns New Yorkers of carbon monoxide and fire hazards during extreme cold weather

    The New York State Division of Consumer Protection today issued a consumer alert about the dangers of carbon monoxide and fire hazards in extreme cold weather. The winter months pose the most risk for these hazards—as the temperatures drop, consumers may turn to dangerous heating alternatives to stay warm. Propane heaters, generators, space heaters and/or outdoor grills all pose lethal risks of carbon monoxide poisoning and fire hazards when used improperly. read more »
  • New gardening series with Newburgh Free Library

    Learn about herbs, microgreens, seeds, planning and planting

    Newburgh Free Library has a new gardening series starting with NUFFI, or Newburgh Urban Farm and Food, starting in February! read more »
  • Get up to 4 free at-home Covid-19 tests for your family

    The Biden Administration to Begin Distributing At-Home, Rapid COVID-19 Tests

    The Biden Administration is Buying One Billion Tests to Give to Americans for Free; Online Ordering of a Half-Billion Tests Begins on January 19th; Builds on Significant Actions to Expand Testing Capacity and Increase Access to Free Testing read more »
  • New York’s Going Foam Free in 2022

    NYS is working to keep our environment safe

    In 2020, New York State adopted the nation's strongest statewide ban of expanded polystyrene, single-use foam food and beverage containers, and polystyrene loose fill packaging materials, commonly known as packing peanuts. read more »
  • Sherman Artists Open Studio – This Weekend!

    Painters, photographers, mixed media, jewelers, fused glass, and fabric artists will open their home studios

    This weekend is the very first Sherman Artists First Open Studio! Fifteen local Sherman artists are participating in the Sherman Open Studio Tour on Saturday and Sunday, December 4th and 5th, 2021, 10 am – 4 pm. Painters, photographers, mixed media, jewelers, fused glass, and fabric artists will open their home studios or participate in pop-up studios read more »