Take Action | Save Yellowstone National Park | Paramount Network - Lake Harding Association

Take Action | Save Yellowstone National Park | Paramount Network

Take Action | Save Yellowstone National Park | Paramount Network

By Micah Moen 14 Comments August 14, 2019


Yellowstone. It’s a lot different
than it is on television, I can tell you that. For two years
I’ve been a ranch hand, working the land
on the Paramount Network series Yellowstone,
a role I was born to play. See, as a kid
I discovered my love for this giant wild punchbowl where the sky
just goes on forever. But today,
something is amiss. Yellowstone has seen changes
that have hunters and ranchers, scientists and park visitors
alike, concerned, not just for
the future of the park, but for the planet itself. I want to know why
this particular place is so important. Why this environment,
this ecosystem can answer the bigger questions
that we have. So this trip is different
from the ones I took as a child. This trip isn’t about
discovering nature’s beauty, but about finding out
what I can do to preserve it. Good morning, everyone. Good morning. My name is Erik Oberg. I am the founder
of the phenology project here in Yellowstone. Phenology is the study
of nature’s calendar, right? So we are- Like me, Erik Oberg
came to Yellowstone as a kid and fell in love. Okay, let’s take a look. Today he’s a biologist
and a Yellowstone park ranger who leads a team
of volunteer citizen scientists that study how the parks,
plants, flowers, and insects are adapting to
a changing environment. This is one of the world’s most
pristine natural laboratories. It’s really one of the places
that gets us as close as we can be to the most
natural conditions that that we find on earth. I would imagine that studying
cycles and patterns are going to highlight changes that the ecosystem’s
going through. Nature is always changing,
but here in Yellowstone we have some really
clear evidence that that pace of change
is happening faster. Spring is now coming
about a month sooner than it did
30 years ago. 30 years ago. Yeah, a month change
in about 30 years of time. Someone who understands
the challenges facing Yellowstone better
than most is Dr. Mike Tercek, a Ph.D. in ecology
and evolutionary biology. He’s one of 875 permanent
residents of Gardiner, Montana, the gateway to the park. Here he’s spent
the last 20 years exploring and studying his town’s
next door neighbor. Can you tell me why
it’s so important that we use this ecosystem
here at Yellowstone? This was a national park before there was
a National Park Service. 1872, it was the place where
preserving nature was born, you could argue. If we can’t protect this and do
the things to maintain it, what does that mean
for the rest of the world, the life support system
that keeps us alive? To better understand
the scale of the threat that a warmer and drier climate
means for Yellowstone, we decided to get out of
the weeds and into the clouds. All of these downed trees,
that’s fire damage. Yeah. When you’re high up
like this, you can really see
the scale of the problem. You know, forests like
Whitebark Pine that took 20 human generations
to grow that are going to be wiped out
in one generation and they won’t have
time to recover. You have the northeast entrance
in Yellowstone? Since the 1960s, we have one month less of snow
cover than we used to. What would you say to people
who would argue that the differences that
we’re seeing are an anomaly, that if you zoom out far enough,
it’s going to be just a blip and it’s not as bad as you think
and it’s going to be part of the normal course
corrections of the planet? The biggest difference
is the rate of the change that we’re talking about, and it’s very well correlated
to industrial activity. If you run the climate
projections out into the future, under a business-as-usual
scenario, you’ll have years
that are as dry as 1988, which was considered
a 300-year event, by 2050 or so that’ll happen
every three to five years. Which means that it will become
a charred moonscape- So you would just lose all
the majesty of our forest. Yeah. You know, I think
a lot of people will say, “Well, it’ll still be wild
and it’ll still be different,” but I have to disagree.
We’re in the early stages of what I consider
to be a catastrophe, and you can’t hide
how you feel about this anymore. This for me has to work out
a certain way. We need to stop the problem
before it gets to that point. One person doing his part to stop the problem
is Charley Able, a local engineer
and lifelong outdoorsman. Charley’s joining me
in the park today to help collect data on bison. What’s that? Oh, I heard a tone. That’s right. So there’s a collared animal.
Right there. And we just sort of metal detect
your way to a- You metal detect your way in. Our turn as citizen scientists
is led by Park Ranger and wildlife biologist
Chris Geremiah. Geremiah runs a team
of volunteers who monitor the impact shorter
growing seasons have on Yellowstone’s
largest mammals. What these bison do
is they re-graze the same area over and over and over again. It’s kind of like cutting
your lawn with a lawnmower, and as a result,
the grass has never matured. They’re soft,
they’re nutritious, they’re the same things
you’d find on a watered lawn. And then we’re trying
to figure out, well, how does that affect all
the other animals in the park? The answer to that question
lies somewhere in the grass clippings,
soil samples, and bison poop, or scat as the scientists
like to call it. So once you put these on,
don’t wipe your nose. Okay. So here’s one. That one’s
pretty fresh in there. Okay. Can we flag it? All right.
This is a team effort. [inaudible 00:06:20]. I’m just going to kind of- Yep. Just nice and gently. I was upset when I got the spoon
to begin with, but now- You’re happier about it. I’m happy that I got the spoon
and you got the bags. I think the biggest take-home
from bison is to realize that these animals
are incredibly resilient. They don’t just move
to find food, but how they move makes food,
and they’re very smart. And they’re just going to adapt
to these changes. Or try to. Or try to. Try to because the hard thing
is what happens if they can’t? All these systems
have timescales that they naturally can adapt on. If you try to go faster
than that, you’re kind of out running
what they’re capable of. We know that the temperatures
and the precipitation patterns have changed fairly drastically
in northern Yellowstone over the last hundred years.
So that’s probably happening, maybe more rapid relative
to how animals are learning. That does mean the animal
populations in Yellowstone 20, 50 years from now
may look entirely different than they do today. The way that I understand
the whole system working, all of the parts work together, and I didn’t realize
how land did that in this way. The soil and the ground and what
lives on it shape one another, and it’s a continuing
dance cycle of life. You know, I’ve never felt
so motivated to be a better dance partner,
I guess. My fellow bison scat collector,
Charley Able, has been dancing with
climate change for decades, first as an MIT-trained engineer
who started a mining and drilling company
with this data and as a lifelong hunter
and fisherman. Now he’s a dedicated volunteer for the national
nonpartisan organization, Citizens’ Climate Education,
and will talk to anybody who will listen
about climate change solutions. Most people have opinions
about this. Like it’s kind of
a polarized thing, but if you start drilling down
into exactly what people know, you can help draw them
into a conversation. A lot of people that might
disagree that this phenomenon, climate change,
is even real or existing, are the most adversely affected
by and they’re outdoors people. Will it take them
to lose things and see it before
they want to make an effort? It might.
That’s the unfortunate truth. The streams might
have to get warm enough that trout have
trouble surviving. We might have to lose
some big game. Stuff like that might have
to happen for people to realize, “Hey, this is affecting me.”. So there’s gotta be a way
to plug in the people that don’t know
what they don’t know. If it’s not economical, I want
to put something in their heart and shock them
so they wake up. So then, I think everybody
wants to do that. But the reality is you
can’t push or shock people. That’s why I take
the approach that I do because I think honestly
it’s the only one that can be successful. [singing 00:09:26] There’s a piece of Yellowstone that’s 22 miles
from the nearest road. The most remote patch of land
in all the lower 48 states. But no matter how far it is
from asphalt or industry, it’s still ground zero
for rapid climate change. So why am I leaving here
more hopeful than ever? Because I’m leaving
with the knowledge that citizens like you and me are fighting for this wild,
magical place. The real trick is to kind of
call the legislators like they’ll actually listen. And so that’s why I’m going
around talking to people. Just because
it’s not happening today and just because
it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen tomorrow, you just keep grinding away,
and we’ll get there. I was really inspired by what
President Johnson said in 1964 when he signed
the Wilderness Act, which is pretty connected
to a place like Yellowstone. He said that
if future generations are going to remember us
with gratitude rather than contempt,
we must leave them more than the miracles
of modern technology. We must leave them
a glimpse of the world as it was when it was new, not just after
we got through with it. It’s not a science problem.
It’s a human problem. You have to reach people
in a way that they care about. Get them to care about
particular places like Yellowstone. After my trip to Yellowstone, I care about this place
more than ever, and I’m going to talk to
as many people as I can about not only
what’s happening here, but what that means
for our planet. Do you want to take action?
Citizens’ Climate Education gives ordinary citizens
the power to educate political leaders,
the media, and the general public
about climate change solutions. Find your local chapter
and get started today.

14 Comments found

User

DarryVideoEdit

He's a ball of sunshine and I would do anything for him .

Reply
User

sdushdiu

Its called cyclical solar variability and the fact that we are on the cusp of entering a Grand Solar Minimum – a period of extended lack of sunspot activity where the sun experiences a relative period of inactivity on the sun – and diminished energy output.
The BS known as anthropogenic CO2 driven climate change based on a 25-30 year local period of cyclical behavior extrapolated linearly well past the local maximum point of inflection – called the "Pause" by the same said idiots – is, as the UN's IPCC has clearly stated – not at all about climate change but rather about wealth redistribution.
But it's sad that the political drivers behind the SJW fantasy based on guilt-ridden belief rather than real science continue to push the same corrupt narrative.

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User

sdushdiu

In a word – more political driven bullshit ignorant of the actual science behind cyclical climate change. For all of the guilt-ridden anthropogenic climate changers out there, explain the cyclical history maximums and minimums that have occurred before all of the political hot air and flatulence you guys are so adept at producing…
Major events and approximate dates

Event Start End
Homeric minimum 950BC 800BC
Oort minimum 1040 1080

Medieval maximum 1100 1250

Wolf minimum 1280 1350

Spörer Minimum
1450 1550
Maunder Minimum
1645 1715
Dalton Minimum
1790 1820
Modern Maximum
1900 1998
New Grans Solar Minimum 2023
Yup, it was all aerosol cans and cow and SJW flatulence.

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User

Kaylynn Starnes

I love Yellowstone national Park, I only live 2 hrs away from the west entrance. There's many simple things a person can do to preserve our great park.

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User

Wannabejober

Just gone through MT, WY, SD and was surprised how unusually green it still is for the August!
So cut the crap about dryer and hotter weather! Hit the historical archives and learn the weather patterns!

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User

Phil Long

Liberal propaganda.

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User

Scott Ruhl

Fantastic video! Thank you Ian Bohen and Paramount for shining a light on this. I hope you guys do more of these.

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User

AppTouch Technologies

Lots of fake scientists in the comments. If you’re not part of the solution you are the problem. Protect nature or lose everything.

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User

George

You have no control over plate tectonics and vulcanism…when Mother Nature determines it's time the whole region, Yellowstone Valley will become unrecognizable..

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User

Diane

Ian Bohen, please look at the website for Wild Idea Buffalo Company. There is SO much information about bison, the Great Plains and regenerative agriculture. Dan O'Brien is doing a wonderful job and is working with other environmental efforts such as Patagonia. BTW, we LOVE Yellowstone and have visited multiple times…it's a treasure. Treasures in our country need to be preserved and available for future generations…not just humans, but future generations of the creatures who live there.

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User

Wicked Tree Farm

People only need to pay attention to their own environment to see climate change. I have lived in SE Idaho, a few hours from Yellowstone, for the past 44 years and the weather patterns have changed so much since I was a child. Spring absolutely comes earlier, fall is coming later. I remember trudging through snow at Halloween as a child. Now we can wear light jackets. Plants I had to replant as annuals every year, now come up a perennials, not only from from reseeding but the roots as well. This is all happening over relativity short time. Even if it was just an inevitable change, why risk it? Why take such a devastating chance?

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User

Kris Chillinsky

How Wolves change the rivers…. you guys should check out that video…

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User

Ned Kelly

So if the ice caps have been completely non existent in the past. Over half the world freezing, unfreezing. Repeating this process several times over long before we started putting shit into the atmosphere. What on this earth makes people believe that they can stop this form happening again? Id be more worried about whats under Yellowstone then whats on top. Good buy USA…

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User

Kellis0289

I think the term 'climate change' needs to be changed. Just hearing those words turns off so many people from the conversation before it starts. We should also try to work around legislators so they can stop using it as just a talking point in debates.

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