Mount Rushmore National Memorial under construction.
The workers had to endure conditions that varied from blazing hot to bitterly cold and windy. Each day they climbed 700 stairs to the top of the mountain to punch-in on the time clock. Then 3/8 inch thick steel cables lowered them over the front of the 500-foot face of the mountain in a "bosun chair." Despite the dangers, no one was killed during the project.
Otters in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska.
The sea otter population of Glacier Bay has increased dramatically in the past 20 years. Ecologists consider sea otters a keystone species here. Otters consume vast quantities of clams, urchins, crabs, and other invertebrates and their presence creates ripples through the ecosystem. NPS photo.
Every day someone like you becomes a wildland wildfire fighter, a teacher, a trail-builder, a museum curator, or a park ranger. Discover your opportunities in national parks. Come to play. Come to learn. Come to serve. Develop your environmental leadership skills. Find a job. Be the next generation to preserve and protect these great places.
With more than 80% of Americans living in urban areas, urban parks are more important than ever. The father of American landscape architecture, Frederick Law Olmsted, said of urban parks:
It is one great purpose of the Park to supply to the hundreds of thousands of tired workers, who have no opportunity to spend their summers in the country, a specimen of God's handiwork that shall be to them, inexpensively, what a month or two in the White Mountains or the Adirondacks is, at great cost, to those in easier circumstances.
DOINews: National Park Service: Grand Canyon's Green Team Wins a 2011 GreenGov Presidential Award
On Wednesday, Nov. 2, the White House Council on Environmental Quality announced that Grand Canyon National Park's Green Team was among the 2011 winners of the GreenGov Presidential Awards for exceptional efforts to promote sustainability in agency operations while pursuing President Obama's Executive Order on Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy and Economic Performance.
"President Obama challenged the federal community to lead by example to improve efficiency, cut waste and pollution, and promote clean energy," said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. "The Grand Canyon Team exemplifies how the National Park Service is meeting the president's challenge, and shows that you can make decisions that protect clean air and water, dramatically improve energy efficiency, and reduce costs – all at the same time."
The Grand Canyon Green Team won the GreenGov Good Neighbor Award for working with neighboring rural communities to responsibly dispose of electronic, universal and hazardous waste in the Grand Canyon National Park region. Partners for this effort included the Grand Canyon Railway, Xanterra South Rim, Williams Clean and Beautiful Committee, the city of Williams, the city of Flagstaff, and Coconino County Supervisor Carl Taylor.
The partnership helped divert more than 56 tons of waste from local community landfills, including 214 large appliances, 34,617 pounds of electronics, and 600 tires. Through their efforts, the Grand Canyon Green Team was able to give residents and businesses in rural communities the opportunity to act responsibly by reducing hazardous and electronic waste, extending cooperative conservation beyond park boundaries. Additionally, their success can be used as a model for other federal facilities that are located away from densely populated areas where conventional recycling efforts are not feasible.