Glacier National Park in Montana Quietly Removes Its ‘Gone by 2020’ Signs

Glacier National Park in Montana Quietly Removes Its ‘Gone by 2020’ Signs, by Roger Roots.

Officials at Glacier National Park (GNP) have begun quietly removing and altering signs and government literature which told visitors that the Park’s glaciers were all expected to disappear by either 2020 or 2030.

In recent years the National Park Service prominently featured brochures, signs and films which boldly proclaimed that all glaciers at GNP were melting away rapidly. But now officials at GNP seem to be scrambling to hide or replace their previous hysterical claims while avoiding any notice to the public that the claims were inaccurate.

Teams from Lysander Spooner University visiting the Park each September have noted that GNP’s most famous glaciers such as the Grinnell Glacier and the Jackson Glacier appear to have been growing — not shrinking — since about 2010. (The Jackson Glacier — easily seen from the Going-To-The-Sun Highway — may have grown as much as 25% or more over the past decade.)

The centerpiece of the visitor center at St. Mary near the east boundary is a large three-dimensional diorama showing lights going out as the glaciers disappear. Visitors press a button to see the diorama lit up like a Christmas tree in 1850, then showing fewer and fewer lights until the diorama goes completely dark. As recently as September 2018 the diorama displayed a sign saying GNP’s glaciers were expected to disappear completely by 2020. …

The ‘gone by 2020’ claims were repeated in the New York Times, National Geographic, and other international news sources. But no mainstream news outlet has done any meaningful reporting regarding the apparent stabilization and recovery of the glaciers in GNP over the past decade.

Par for the course.

Btw, glacier growth or shrinkage is driven by changes in precipitation more than temperature.