Climate change will drastically alter Yellowstone in coming decades

This article discusses how climate change will drastically alter Yellowstone in coming decades.

Warmer temperatures, longer and more volatile fire seasons, shorter winters, less snowfall and significant changes in the dominant species of plants: The iconic park you see here today will be fundamentally altered by global warming in the coming decades.

“That conclusion is pretty much inescapable,” said John Gross, an ecologist with the National Park Service’s Climate Change response program. “It’s really more a question of the when and how it occurs than if.”

Scientists have already documented dozens of changes in the park in the past 50 years, including 30 fewer days with snow on the ground per year, 80 more days above freezing per year at the northeast entrance and higher average temperatures overall, especially during the nighttime. The ramifications are huge, but exactly what that means for the park in the future is hard to pinpoint.

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