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.
Secretary Kempthorne Announces Settlement Of Decades-Long Licensing Dispute on Cushman Hydroelectric Project
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne today announced the settlement of a variety of complex technical and procedural issues for the Cushman Hydroelectric Project in Tacoma, Washington. The issues have made this one of the longest-running relicensing proceedings in Federal Energy Regulatory Commission history.
“It gives me great pleasure to be the Secretary to announce resolution of a dispute that began more than 80 years ago and a FERC relicensing process characterized by more than 30 years of disagreement,” said Kempthorne. “Credit is due to a collaborative process from across the Department. Representatives from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Park Service and the Office of the Solicitor contributed countless hours to achieve this goal, and I am proud of their efforts.”
Negotiations also included the Skokomish Indian Tribe, The City of Tacoma, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service and the State of Washington's Department of Fish and Wildlife and Department of Ecology.
The Cushman Hydroelectric Project was first licensed in 1924. Because the project occupies a portion of the Skokomish Indian Reservation, the Department submitted new license conditions to FERC in 1997. A new Project license was issued in 1998 but did not include such things as protective measures for the Skokomish Reservation and fish species listed subsequently under the Endangered Species Act.
After a D.C. Circuit Court decision remanded the case to FERC to include the Department's conditions in the Project license, the Tribe and the City of Tacoma began settlement negotiations involving treaty fishery, flooding damage and other claims. The Interior Department has helped develop a settlement that provides appropriate mitigation for Project-related impacts to the Skokomish Reservation and constitutes a proper exercise of statutory authorities and federal trust responsibility to the Tribe.
First, this innovative agreement protects Reservation resources, threatened bull trout, and fish and wildlife habitat by requiring a variety of specific measures. These include minimum flows in the North Fork Skokomish River, upstream and downstream fish passage facilities, habitat restoration, flood mitigation and reduction, and enhancement of fish populations in the North Fork, Lake Cushman and Lake Kokanee.
Second, the agreement establishes a dynamic role for the Tribe in implementing the license. The Tribe will be involved directly in planning and decision making.
Third, in conjunction with a related agreement between the Tribe and Tacoma, the Skokomish Tribe will be compensated for the Project's past, present, and future use of Reservation lands and impacts to Reservation resources covering a period of more than 80 years.
Finally, the agreement establishes a framework for future cooperation and collaboration.
Kempthorne concluded that, “While the agreement signifies the culmination of a contentious and arduous licensing proceeding, it also represents a hopeful beginning for regional resources, efficient energy production, and a new relationship between the Tribe and Tacoma.”