In Alaska, where about 80 percent of the landscape has been identified as being permafrost, National Park Service scientists are working with several partners to inventory those lands to better monitor climate-change impacts.
The battle between man and bug continues at Rocky Mountain National Park, where crews will be busy this spring trying to blunt the onslaught of bark beetles in the park's forests.
Hurricane Sandy and the Blizzard of '13 are history, but in their wake National Park Service managers are rebuilding with an eye on more of the same potent storms in the years ahead. At Cape Cod National Seashore, that also means keeping sea level rise in mind.
Creating a conservation strategy for the Southern Canadian Rockies between Glacier National Park in the United States and Banff National Park in Canada would help wildlife endure climate change, according to a report from the Wildlife Conservation Society Canada.
If ever there was an exclamation point to a report warning of the consequences of climate change, Hurricane Sandy was it. As the storm swept up the Eastern Seaboard last fall it cut national seashores in two, inundated mainland parks that lie at sea level, downed untold scores of trees, and in its aftermath left the National Park Service with a glowing opportunity to put its parks back together with similarly potent storms in mind.DOI Sustainability Plan.pdf
Signals of climate change seem to be more and more frequent in some parts of the country. In the Rocky Mountains, snowfall patterns are changing, temperatures are warming, bird behavior is alternating.
Photographic slides paper-clipped to strings to dry out. Officer's Row at Fort Hancock propped up with two-by-fours. Multi-use paths ripped out in places and buried in sand elsewhwere. That was part of the aftermath from Hurricane Sandy at Gateway National Recreation Area.
Barrier islands are creatures of the seas, cast about and pushed around by the waves and currents. Proof of that can be found today at Fire Island National Seashore along the New York coast, where the barrier island it sets on was cut in two as well as shoved closer to the Long Island mainland by Hurricane Sandy.
Today, four months after Hurricane Sandy battered and bruised the Eastern Seaboard, the disarray the storm delivered across many units of the National Park System continues to be cleaned up. Some damage remains to be discovered. And though summer remains months away, some units will be severely challenged to be fully operational by Memorial Day.
Work to recover Fire Island National Seashore in New York from Hurricane Sandy continues, but it's too early to plan a Memorial Day Weekend escape there, according to national seashore officials.