Tahoe in the News

LISTEN: Millions of people visit Lake Tahoe each year. Is that sustainable?

Paul Boger | KNPR | State of Nevada
February 15, 2023

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Lake Tahoe is a true natural gem, drawing tourists to its crystal clear waters, to its skiing, to its escape from the push and pull of our fast-paced lives.

At least, it used to be an escape.

Today, the area draws somewhere around 15 million people. Roads to and from the lake turn into traffic jams like you see on Interstate 15.

Campsites, trails and beaches are packed. Ski slopes are busier than ever.

All that’s led to the question: Is this level of tourism sustainable in an area that is so ecologically sensitive? Is there any way to limit people who want to travel there? And if so, what will that do to businesses, as well as the tax base that some of the environmental agencies might rely on?

One person deeply concerned about the lake is Jesse Patterson, chief strategy officer for the League to Save Lake Tahoe, otherwise known as Keep Tahoe Blue. We talked with him in the past about the growing murkiness of the water, invasive species and the impact of the Caldor Fire. He joins State of Nevada host Joe Schoenmann along with Andy Chapman, the president and CEO of Travel North Tahoe.

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