President Donald Trump said fireworks will take place on Mount Rushmore on Wednesday of this year’s Independence Day, an event he would “try” to attend.
In May 2019, Republican Governor of South Dakota, Kristi Noem, initially announced that the state and interior ministry began a contract to return fireworks to Mt. Rushmore with the 2020 Independence Day celebration. The fireworks were stopped in 2009 because of the forest next to the monument was at risk of forest fire. Noem said that advances in pyrotechnics and an intensified forest led to the decision to have the fireworks return.
The infestation of pine beetles in nearby forests was a cause for concern when the fireworks stopped. This infestation can kill trees, increasing the risk of flammability and a potential forest fire risk. Fireworks increased the risk of a fire igniting.
Some studies suggest that climate change causes some species of pine beetle to reproduce more quickly and affect their growth and development to become more deadly.
Trump said he easily secured this year’s show.
“What can burn? It is stone. Nobody knew why, ”Trump said about environmental concerns.
A recent report by the US Geological Survey cited past fireworks at the memorial as a likely cause of increased concentrations of contaminants in the groundwater near the memorial.
“I called our people and got approval in 15 minutes, and we’re going to have the first fireworks on Mount Rushmore, and I’ll try to get out of there if I can,” Trump said Wednesday at an initial trade agreement signing ceremony between the United States and China.
The President has participated in several major events that highlight American patriotism on U.S. holidays such as July 4th and Veterans’ Day.
In 2018, Trump unsuccessfully pursued a military parade on Veterans Day in Washington in honor of the 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended World War I. The Department of Defense postponed the parade, which included U.S. troops in period uniforms and U.S. military aircraft, but not heavy vehicles such as tanks, to prevent infrastructure damage.
And on July 4, the President in Washington celebrated Independence Day with military overflights, fireworks, and military tanks.