The National Park Service Is Falling Apart

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Frustrated by the fact that their sweet leader, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, has apparently refused to meet with them even once since he took office, nine members of the National Park Service Advisory Board “abruptly quit” Monday night, the Washington Post reports. The board is responsible for designating natural landmarks and historic sites, and now three-quarters of its members—the majority of whom have been on the board for seven years—are gone.

Those who resigned include former Alaska governor Tony Knowles and former chairwoman of the National Parks Conservation Association Gretchen Long.

In messages to the Post, Knowles said that Zinke has not consulted the board on any changes made to the National Park Service in the last year, including a reversal on its plastic water bottle ban and an increase in visitor fees. And though the group was required to meet twice a year, they have not done so since Trump took office. (Zinke has also yet to nominate an NPS director.)


Chairman of the Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks Phil Francis told the Post that Zinke’s treatment of the board is “discourteous and disrespectful,” adding that it’s “inexcusable and, unfortunately, consistent with a decidedly anti-park pattern demonstrated by Secretary Zinke’s department. We keep waiting for a pro-park agenda to emerge, but we are now convinced we are waiting in vain.”