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President's Decision To Leave Paris Accord Draws Criticism From National Park Advocates


President Trump's decision to withdraw the nation from the Paris Agreement on climate change drew concerns for the National Park System and speculation that more wildfires will flare up in Great Smoky Mountains National Park/NPS file photo

President Trump's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate change accord is drawing criticism from park advocates and businesses tied to national parks, as well as pledges to reduce carbon footprints and praise for states that are focused on renewable energy.

“It’s another setback, essentially. It’s just another indication of the lack of commitment towards addressing climate changes," Kristen Brengel, the vice president for government affairs for the National Parks Conservation Association, said Friday. "Parks are the places where people can actually see the visible impacts of climate change. In many of the policy decisions that have been made up until this point, we’re basically pulling back on proactively addressing carbon and promoting dirty energy sources like coal. Not moving forward with the Paris agreement is just another indicator for our lack of commitment for addressing climate change.”

At Vail Resorts, Inc., which manages the Grand Teton Lodge Company that manages properties in Grand Teton National Park as well as a portfolio of ski resorts, Chairman and CEO Rob Katz said the president's decision wouldn't sway the corporation from working to reduce its carbon footprint.

"We are deeply saddened by the decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. As a global company, Vail Resorts believes we have a unique responsibility to protect the incredible natural landscapes and environment that surround our mountain resorts and those across our planet.," he said in a release. "Climate change is a global challenge that requires global cooperation, and it is disheartening to see the United States pull away from working with the other 194 countries that were part of the Agreement. Vail Resorts will redouble our efforts to find significant ways to minimize our carbon footprint through reducing our energy use to help address one of the most serious challenges facing our worldwide community."

At the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, President and CEO Ron Tipton took heart in that "10 of the 14 states that are home to the A.T. have set aggressive renewable energy portfolio goals and others are expected to find the need to take action in the absence of federal leadership. The ATC will continue to develop solid climate change related policy with our recently hired director of Federal and Legislative Policy."

Mr. Tipton cast a dim outlook for how continued climate change would impact the trail that stretches from Maine to Georgia and is used not only by long-distance thru-hikers but by section hikers and those out for a weekend meander or day hike.

"In the coming years visitors will likely have to cope with higher temperatures, dried-up streams and more forest fires similar to the devastating fires in Great Smoky Mountains National Park in 2016," he wrote in a letter to A.T. supporters. "For now, water availability isn’t a vital problem, but if those supplies dry up, it will present an entirely different and punishing challenge for those seeking to enjoy the A.T. During the 2007-2008 drought, portions of the Trail in North Carolina had to be closed — was that an unusual event or a harbinger of the future?"

Back at NPCA, Ms. Brengel said it was good to see that the National Park Service's web pages on climate change remained intact and that the agency was continuing its work to address climate change.

“But this constant pursuit by the administration to look for ways to defund climate research and reduce regulations that protect our air, it’s an extremely disappointing direction to head in and it will have dire consequences," she added. “No one should be proud that we’re pulling out of the Paris Agreement. This is disappointing and disheartening. It’s definitely a sad day for parks.”

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The theory has been horribly wrong but they so want to believe.

More hokum.  Admits hurricanes haven't gotten worse, circulation "may" have decreased by it doesn't really matter, drought in one spot with no specific link to climate change is hardly a validation of a prediction of more and greater droughts, the arctic ice was predicted to be gone in 2013 not "as early as 2052, the antarctic sheet has been growing,, "historical evidence suggest" water level will rise in the future but the AGW models have over predicted the rise of the past as they have with rising temperatures.

Climate changes, the predictions of the pace of those changes based on AGW theory have been horribly wrong.

Trump's gift here to the Koch brotheres has been nationally and internationally scorned, with the miniscule but disproportionately  loud exception of a lonely handful of gadfly misfits here on NPT.

Hokum?  All we need to know is that we are dumping greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere at unprecidented levels, and that is warming the planet.  That is not Hokum ecbuck, not at all.  Anything you write to dispute this is not true.

Sorry, Rick and Arg, it looks like you've been Trumped by ec.  After all he points out that no less a world renowned scientific authority on everything like Chris Wallace has proclaimed on a right-wing website channel that the rest of the world is wrong.

But there is still hope.  It won't take much before downtown D.C. will be flooded.  Might not "drain" the swamp, but maybe flush it out. 

Who are we to try to argue with some of the world's top experts on everything.

Might as well give up and enjoy the roasting. 

Argalite - The AGW cult makes models based on the theory that our dumping greenhouse models is warming the planet.  The models have proved to be horribly wrong - as even Chris Wallace (that bastion of conservative thought) has come to realize.  I don't have to dispute it.  The facts dispute it.  

Lee you better go back and pay more attention to the story.  The interview wasn't on a right-wing website channel  and Chris Wallace is hardly some right wing interviewer. 

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