The National Parks Service has quietly removed signs warning visitors to Glacier National Park that they should take their selfies with the glacier now, since it would be gone by 2020 — a victim of climate change.
The Daily Caller reports that NPS was trying to swap out the visitors center signs warning tourists of the park’s impending doom without fanfare, but a blogger who writes specifically about environmental issues noticed the change almost immediately.
The signs, installed during the Obama administration, warned tourists that the glaciers “will all be gone by the year 2020.” They’ve since been replaced by signs that claim climate change is still eroding the glaciers bit by bit, but that researchers can’t make an accurate prediction about when, precisely, the glaciers of Glacier National Park will disappear.
“When they completely disappear, however, will depend on how and when we act,” the sign now reads.
According to the United States Geological Survey, the Caller discovered, the size of the glaciers in any given year depend on the national park’s microclimate and not on the climate as a whole. The glaciers melt and freeze at different rates every year depending on weather and snowfall, and while computer models might have once predicted that they’d all but melt away by 2020, heavier snowfall has been a boon, increasing the glaciers’ overall size steadily since 2009.
In 2019, it seems, the glacier actually grew even more, thanks to a record-breaking Montana snowfall, stubbornly refusing to come into compliance with the Obama adminstration’s dire predictions.