President Donald Trump denies that climate change is real, and he has very, very thin skin when it comes to criticism. Trump’s administration has already begun to clamp down on government agencies that work on climate change and other environmental issues, going so far as to ban them from offering the public updates on their work through social media. But, there’s one agency that won’t let The Donald silence their tweets at his expense. Yep, it’s the National Parks Service again, and Badlands National Park is certainly living up to its name.
The folks at Badlands, a sprawling, harsh landscape full of bison and bighorn sheep in South Dakota, decided to share some hard cold facts about climate change on Twitter — Trump’s preferred social media platform. Although the tweets were deleted later in the day, for a moment they were a brave pro-science beacon.
“The pre-industrial concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was 280 parts per million (ppm). As of December 2016, 404.93 ppm,” the account tweeted on Tuesday afternoon.
“Today, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is higher than at any time in the last 650,000 years,” the account continued, adding that we’ve seen ocean acidification increase 30 percent since the Industrial Revolution.
It’s hard not to interpret this as a direct shot at President Trump, especially after his administration admonished the main National Parks Service Twitter account for retweeting a few clearly anti-Trump tweets on Inauguration Day. After a couple days of silence, the National Parks Service tweeted an apology, though it seems doubtful that their hearts were really in it.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Trump administration placed some Draconian limitations on what the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture could share with the public, and banned any new research grants for the EPA. Trump’s anti-science White House is clearly trying to squash any official government endorsement or study of climate change, the gravest threat facing our species long-term. The folks who work at these agencies aren’t thrilled — but if the rebels at Badlands National Park are anything to go by, it doesn’t look like they’re going to be silenced.