Government shut down will not affect national park geology or climate – but damage will be done, all the same

One great thing about our dynamic planet is the seemingly endless variety of landscapes, vegetation, and wildlife from the highest mountains to the deepest ocean abyssal plains and trenches. Earth’s molten guts generate the movement of the Earth’s crust and define the geology of our continents and ocean floor, while Earth’s climates dictate the changes to the surface where vegetation and wildlife (and people) can eke out existence. Now factor in Time, and you’ve got the complexity of explaining all the wonders of what we can see and explore.

Some of the most awe-inspiring examples of these places have been set aside for all to enjoy and learn from - and our National Park System has been tasked with protecting them. These places have always benefitted from more protection – not less. Unfortunately, government agencies remain dramatically hindered by the ongoing U.S. government shut down.

Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona

Petrified tree log broken into stumps as if carved by chainsaw

Petrified chips of wood litter the grey sandstone bedrock

Olympic National Park & Hoh River, Washington State

Olympic Mountains in summer as seen from over the Hoh River

Glacier National Park, Montana

Regrowth from old forest fires in Glacier National Park

Canyon de Chely National Monument, Arizona

Iron oxide cross bedded sandstone of Canyon de Chelly

Photo credits: Heather Mcardle.

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