A trigger-happy camper, possibly fueled by alcohol, shot another man in an Oregon campground after hearing rustling in the brush. The incident, while not occurring in a national park setting, could fuel arguments of those opposed to the legalization of carrying concealed weapons in national parks.
Plight of the Parks
How did the National Park Service err so badly in developing a winter-use plan for Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks? According to a federal judge who blocked the plan from taking effect, the agency overlooked its own science and its own mission.
Imagine if the National Parks Conservation Association, or the Sierra Club, or The Wilderness Society reported that the U.S. government deserved credit for an "extraordinary year" in protecting the National Park System. That would be some news, wouldn't it?
There are splashes of fall color showing up in Grand Teton National Park, but the reds and rusts are not associated with the changing of the seasons. Rather, they're a dire harbinger of what climate change could exact from the park's forests.
Flamingo Lodge, the only major lodging facility in Everglades National Park, was trashed by Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma in 2005. If enough money can be found somewhere, it’ll be replaced with a lodging complex that is smaller, greener, and more hurricane-resistant.
Four Billion Dollars from the Land and Water Conservation Fund is a Good Start, but the National Park Service Needs More
The Land and Water Conservation Fund was signed into law on September 3, 1964, took effect on January 1, 1965, and has since provided $4 billion to buy national park land and easements. That’s not nearly enough. The National Park Service’s acquisitions backlog has grown to $1.9 billion, and it’s getting bigger every year.
Here's a novel solution to the woes Montana's livestock industry suffers from elk and bison in Yellowstone National Park: Kill them all. Yup, that's the panacea being promoted by an Oklahoma newspaper.
Are national parks in need of a facelift to attract the tourist dollar? Should wild places be better at catering for those wanting some luxury and pampering? If you talk to some in the tourist industry, they would strongly agree.
Remember the good old days, when you could enter a national park and there was no cost to hike a trail, tour a museum, or enjoy nature? Well, those days seemingly are fleeting. In a move likely to disappoint many, the folks at Gettysburg National Military Park are thinking of charging a fee to access their museum.
With the Democratic National Convention under way, and the Republican National Convention soon to follow, it's natural to wonder what these two parties are thinking of in terms of the environment in general and national parks specifically.2008 Draft Democratic Platform.pdf NPCA_Phone_Online_Survey_Results.pdf