Bad-ass Badlands: National park's climate tweets pop up, then go poof

Posted January 26, 2017

Three climate-related tweets sent out by Badlands National Park were deleted after they went viral on Twitter, sparking debate over whether the park was defying the Trump administration.

One tweet focused on carbon dioxide, the most important greenhouse gas heating the atmosphere.

The Twitter account for Badlands National Park let loose some entirely factual but now politically fraught statements regarding climate change on Tuesday afternoon.

The Interior Department itself drew fire from Trump officials on his first day in office, when the agency wad banned from tweeting after retweeting messages about the size of Trump's inauguration ceremony crowd.

That account later tweeted an apology over the "mistaken" retweets, and Park Service representatives have since claimed the decision to stop tweeting was out of hacking concerns.

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But honestly, the most bad-ass thing the Badlands account could tweet out is just more climate change science, every chance possible, at all hours of the day, so that it becomes very, very hard to ignore. Trump has called climate change a hoax.

Days before Mr Trump was inaugurated, the Golden Gate park's account tweeted an image of Martin Luther King Jr, accompanied by a quote about resistance. It pulled the mask off the old Lone Ranger, and it messed around with President Trump.

Thus, Tuesday's tweets about carbon emissions and ocean acidification - all facts - garnered significant attention. A few hours later, the tweets were deleted. That same stance is largely reflected in the people he has nominated to lead government agencies, like the EPA, Interior Department, State Department, Energy Department, and Agriculture Department. Reports surfaced Tuesday that the administration had also ordered the EPA to remove information about climate change from its web page, but newer reports suggest the White House is walking back that order. It's unknown who deleted them. "Not taxpayer subsidized!" The account opened by congratulating the Badlands National Park team and went from there. Just before 5 p.m., the Badlands account tweeted more climate-change information.

The flurry of activity shows how the same internet service that helped fuel Donald Trump's rise to power also can be used against him by government employees - at least until prohibited from doing so.