Chipping Away at Our National Parks

Biscayne National Park, in South Florida, is the world’s largest marine park with 95% of its area under water (photo credit: NPS photo by Shaun Wolfe)

Scientific America has an excellent (albeit disheartening) article written by Dana Hunter up at their website:

The Trump Administration’s Effect on National Parks

How are our national parks faring under the Trump administration and its Republican Congress? Let’s take a look at the latest actions, and you can decide for yourselves.

The report goes on to detail five areas where the current administration is harming the national treasure it is charged with protecting on our behalf:

  • The Trump Administration is Determined to Shrink National Monuments
  • The Trump Administration’s Proposed Budget Slashes National Park Funding
  • The Trump Administration is Muzzling the National Park Service
  • The Trump Administrations is Silencing NPS Climate Change Experts
  • The Trump Administration is Overturning Sensible NPS Regulations

As she writes, “It’s been a hard summer for our public lands.” I highly recommend the full article:The Trump Administration’s Effect on National Parks

Our public lands deserve better. Contact your member of Congress today and demand they support the National Park Service and protect our national monuments.

Trump Administration Silences the EPA

Apparently, the Trump administration has barred staff at the Environmental Protection Agency from awarding any new contracts or grants, or from issuing any press releases, blog updates, or posts to the EPA’s social media accounts.

According to the Associated Press, “the Trump administration has also ordered a “temporary suspension” of all new business activities at the department, including issuing task orders or work assignments to EPA contractors. The orders are expected to have a significant and immediate impact on EPA activities nationwide.”

Copies of the emails ordering the EPA freeze were leaked to the media yesterday.

In related news, the Associated Press has reported these further assaults on our environment by the Trump administration in the 4 short days he has been in office:

President Donald Trump has signed executive actions to advance the construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines.

Trump tells reporters in the Oval Office that the moves on the pipelines will be subject to the terms and conditions being renegotiated by the U.S.


President Barack Obama killed the proposed Keystone XL pipeline in late 2015, saying it would hurt American efforts to reach a global climate change deal.


The pipeline would run from Canada to U.S. refineries in the Gulf Coast. The U.S. government needs to approve the pipeline because it crossed the border.The Army decided last year to explore alternate routes for the Dakota pipeline after the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and its supporters said the pipeline threatened drinking water and Native American cultural sites.


The Trump administration is moving to delay implementation of at least 30 environmental rules finalized in the closing months of President Barack Obama’s term. That could be a potential first step in seeking to kill the regulations.


A summary of actions published Tuesday in the Federal Register includes rulings that updated air pollution standards for several states, renewable fuel standards and limits on the amount of formaldehyde that can leach from wood products.


President Donald Trump signed a directive shortly after his inauguration Friday ordering a “regulatory freeze pending review” for all federal agency rules that had been finalized but have not yet taken effect.


The action sets the new effective date for all 30 regulations as March 21.


Three climate-related tweets sent out by Badlands National Park have been deleted after they went viral on Twitter, sparking debate over whether the park was defying the Trump administration.


The South Dakota park posted tweets Tuesday that accurately quoted climate science data, including the current record-setting high concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. President Donald Trump has called climate change a hoax.


The tweets were shared thousands of times, and the Democratic National Committee circulated the message by email with the subject line “Resist.”


The tweets came just three days after the Interior Department briefly suspended its Twitter accounts after the park service retweeted photos about turnout at Trump’s inauguration. The accounts were reactivated the next day.

Happy 96th Birthday To The National Park Service!

The National Park Service turns 96 years old today. Their official website invites everyone to visit any of the 397 national parks to help celebrate “the big day” with many locations offering special events.

The National Park Service was signed into existance on August 25, 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson after a successful publicity campaign headed by Stephen Mather.

“Established in 1916, the National Park Service was created to care for all of the national parks throughout the country. Each park represents an important part of our collective identity. Some parks commemorate notable people and achievements, others conserve magnificent landscapes and natural wonders, and all provide a place to have fun and learn.

The extraordinary mission of the National Park Service extends even further than the parks, however. The work of NPS reaches into communities across the country where they work with partners to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities that revitalize neighborhoods and enhance the quality of life.”

We have several National Parks in Florida, including the Big Cypress National Preserve, Biscayne National Park, and the Everglades National Park.


EDIT: Unfortunately, celebrations planned for the South Florida National Parks have been cancelled due to approaching Tropical Storm Isaac.