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 Salazar to Launch Regional Meetings on Energy Development of U.S. Outer Continental Shelf
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar will host regional public meetings in Atlantic City and New Orleans next week to gather information and public comment to help build a comprehensive energy strategy for the Outer Continental Shelf.
The meetings are scheduled for Monday, April 6, at the Atlantic City Convention Center and Wednesday, April 8, at Tulane University's McAlister Auditorium. They begin at 9 a.m. local time and the morning session will be carried live by webcast. The link is http://www.doi.gov/ocs. Secretary Salazar will hold an availability for credentialed media only following the morning session. The meetings, which include lunch and dinner breaks, are scheduled to end at 8 p.m.
After opening remarks by the Secretary, a report from Interior's Minerals Management Service and U.S. Geological Survey will be presented, summarizing the available information on the extent of U.S. offshore energy resources – conventional and renewable – along with information regarding sensitive environmental areas and resources on the Outer Continental Shelf.
Regional Governors and elected federal officials, private citizens, interested organizations, energy producers, advocacy groups, and local governments have been invited to attend and offer brief comments. Most of the meeting will be devoted to hearing from these elected officials and public and private interests. Those wishing to speak will be asked to register upon entering the conference hall.
Individuals unable to attend or speak at the meeting are welcome to submit written statements, comments or documents, either at the meeting or during the extended public comment period. Those comments can be either submitted at the meeting or throughout the extended public comment period electronically at www.MMS.gov, “Five Year Program,” “How to Comment,” or by mail to Ms. Renee Orr, Chief, Leasing Division, Mineral Management Service, MS 4010, 381 Elden Street, Herndon, VA 20170-4817.
Two other public comment meetings on Outer Continental Shelf energy development will be held at the Dena'ina Convention Center in Anchorage, Alaska, on Tuesday, April 14; and at the University of California-San Francisco's Mission Bay Conference Center in San Francisco on Thursday, April 16.
These meetings are part of a four-part strategy Salazar announced on Feb. 10, 2009, for developing a new, comprehensive energy development plan for the U. S. Outer Continental Shelf, including conventional and renewable resources. Interior oversees more than 1.7 billion acres on the Outer Continental Shelf — an area roughly three fourths the size of the entire United States.
The strategy is composed of the following parts:
Extending the public comment period 180 days -- until Sept. 21, 2009 -- on the Draft Proposed 5-Year Oil and Gas Leasing Program announced last year.
Developing a report by Minerals Management Service and U.S. Geological Survey scientists on conventional and renewable offshore energy resources.
Host four regional meetings in April, one each for the Atlantic Coast, Gulf Coast, Pacific Coast, and Alaska to review the findings of the report and to gather input from all interested parties on where and how Interior should develop the traditional and renewable energy resources of the Outer Continental Shelf.
Expedite the Department's renewable energy rulemaking for the Outer Continental Shelf that was required under the Energy Policy Act of 2005, but not yet accomplished.
The Atlantic City Convention Center is located at One Convention Boulevard
Atlantic City, New Jersey. McAlister Auditorium is located on McAlister Drive between Freret and Willow Streets, 6823 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana. The Dena'ina Civic & Convention Center in Anchorage, Alaska, is located at 600 W. Seventh Ave. The Mission Bay Conference Center at UCSF is in Robertson Auditorium, 1675 Owens Street, San Francisco, California.
More information about the four regional public meetings and Interior's responsibilities for U.S. Outer Continental Shelf energy development is online at http://www.doi.gov/ocs.