Spring is coming early in 3/4 of national parks, according to a new study. Awesome? Not so much. As flowers bloom earlier every year, it’s disrupting the link between the wildflowers and the arrival of birds, bees, and butterflies that feed on and pollinate the flowers. In Shenandoah, an earlier spring is giving invasive plants a head start, and they’re displacing native wildflowers, leading to costly management issues.
Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
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.
Secretary Salazar: U.S. Offshore Wind Resources Could Lead America's Clean-Energy Revolution
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. offshore areas hold enormous potential for wind energy development near the nation's highest areas of electricity demand – coastal metropolitan centers, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar said today.
“More than three-fourths of the nation's electricity demand comes from coastal states and
the wind potential off the coasts of the lower 48 states actually exceeds our entire U.S. electricity demand,” Salazar told a summit meeting of 25X'25 America's Energy Future, a group working to lower America's carbon emissions.
Citing major findings of a report he commissioned from Interior scientists, Salazar also said the Outer Continental Shelf energy resources report found huge information gaps about the location and extent of offshore oil and gas resources.
“Along the Atlantic Coast, for example, the seismic data we have is twenty-five years old,” Salazar said. “How should we gather the information we currently lack about our offshore oil and gas resources? How do we manage the costs of gathering seismic data? Are there areas on the OCS that should be of priority for information collection?”
Salazar said information from the U.S. Geological Survey-Minerals Management Service Report will be a starting point for public comment meetings around the country in the next few weeks, starting in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and New Orleans, Louisiana, next week. The Executive Summary is online at http://www.doi.gov/ocs.
“Yes, we can build a clean energy future,” Salazar told the summit, “but it will require American energy, American ingenuity and American courage to tackle our dependence on foreign oil and the growing perils of climate change.”
“The realities of climate change are upon us,” Salazar said. “For too long we have ignored the true costs of our energy use. Building America's clean energy future is front and center on President Obama's agenda. He knows that if we are turn our economy around; that if we are to lead the next great technological transformation in our world; and that if we are to create millions of new clean-energy jobs here at home, we must finally take the moon-shot on energy independence.”
Oil, gas, and coal will be part of that plan, but they alone are not enough, Salazar said, noting that the United States must import almost two-thirds of its oil and most of that goes to the transportation sector. “America's own oil and natural gas supplies are limited,” the Secretary noted. “We sit on 3 percent of the world's oil reserves. We consume 25 percent of its oil. Our dependence on foreign oil is a national security problem, an environmental security problem, and an economic security problem.”
Interior, which managers of one-fifth of the nation's land mass and 1.7 billion acres of ocean off the U.S. coasts, will have a major role in creating the nation's clean-energy future, Salazar said. The Department's Bureau of Land Management has identified about 20.6 million acres of public land with wind energy potential in the 11 western states and 29.5 million acres with solar energy potential in the six southwestern states. There are also over 140 million acres of public land in the western states and Alaska with geothermal resource potential.
There is also significant wind and wave potential in U.S. offshore waters. The National Renewable Energy Lab has identified more than 1,000 gigawatts of wind potential off the Atlantic coast, and more than 900 gigawatts of wind potential off the Pacific Coast. The Lab estimates that the class 5 wind potential off the coasts of the lower 48 states exceeds the entire U.S. electricity demand. Currently, there are more than 2,000 megawatts of offshore wind projects proposed in the United States.
“We are opening our doors not just to oil and gas and coal, but also to the wise development of solar, wind and wave, biofuels, geothermal, and small hydro on America's lands,” Salazar said.
Video, audio and text of the Secretary's remarks as well as more information on Interior's Outer Continental Shelf responsibilities are online athttp://www.doi.gov/ocs.