Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
Secretary Jewell to Team Up with CAL FIRE to Raise Awareness as California Prepares for Above Normal Wildfire Season
Last edited 4/27/2016
SAN DIEGO, California – On Tuesday, May 6, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell will join with California Secretary for Natural Resources John Laird, Chief Ken Pimlott, Director of CAL FIRE and other key Southern California first responders to educate the public and communities on how they can help prepare for what's expected to be a serious fire season throughout California.
The San Diego event is part of California's Wildfire Awareness Week, a weeklong series of events up and down the Golden State to discuss simple steps the public and communities can take to prepare for and prevent the wildfires.
As climate change spurs extended droughts and longer fire seasons, the Obama Administration is working with state, local and tribal partners to maintain healthy landscapes, prepare communities for fire season, and better address the nation's wildland fire threats.
According to a congressionally-mandated FLAME Act report, the current wildfire outlook for significant fires in California through May 2014 is above normal. The U.S. Forest Service and the Department of the Interior are projected to spend over $470 million more than is available to fight wildfires this season. The report estimates that the Forest Service and Interior may need to spend $1.8 billion fighting fires this year, while the agencies have only $1.4 billion available for firefighting.
In 2013, nearly 10,000 fires were reported in the state, burning 578,000 acres. The largest was the Rim Fire that burned more than 257,000 acres across the Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park, destroying homes, commercial properties and threatening the Hetch-Hetchy Valley and reservoir, a water source for the city of San Francisco.
Sally Jewell, Secretary of the Interior John Laird, California Secretary for Natural Resources Chief Ken Pimlott, Director, CAL FIRE Greg Griswold, San Diego (MVU) Unit Chief Mark Ghilarducci, Director, California Office of Emergency Services Shawna Legarza, U.S. Forest Service Region 5 Director of Fire & Aviation Management
Wildfire Awareness Event
Tuesday, May 6, 2014; 11:30 a.m. PDT
CAL FIRE San Diego Unit Headquarters
2249 Jamacha Road
El Cajon, San Diego County,
Media wishing to attend the event should RSVP here.