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.
Salazar Signs Agreement with 10 East Coast Governors to Establish Atlantic Offshore Wind Energy Consortium
Office of the Secretary Policy Management and Budget
Announces New Atlantic Offshore Renewable Energy Office
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON, DC – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and the governors of 10 East Coast states today signed a Memorandum of Understanding that formally establishes an Atlantic Offshore Wind Energy Consortium to promote the efficient, orderly, and responsible development of wind resources on the Outer Continental Shelf.
Salazar announced the agreement at Capitol Hill Oceans Week 2010, where he also announced the establishment of a new regional renewable energy office to coordinate and appropriately expedite the development of wind, solar and other renewable energy resources on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf. The office will be located in Virginia so as to be convenient to all states.
“I am very pleased to be joining with the governors of Atlantic coastal states to promote the safe and environmentally responsible development of the exceptional wind energy resources off our coasts,” Salazar said. “Appropriate development of Outer Continental Shelf wind power will enhance regional and national energy security and create American jobs through the development of energy markets and investments in renewable energy technologies.”
Several wind energy projects for the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf have been proposed for East Coast states, positioning the region to tap into the enormous potential of wind power in the U.S. Developing this resource could create thousands of manufacturing, construction and operations jobs and displace older, inefficient fossil-fueled generating plants, helping significantly to combat climate change.
“Renewable energy resources hold great economic promise,” Salazar said. “By one estimate, if our nation fully pursues its potential for wind energy on land and offshore, wind can generate as much as 20 percent of our electricity by 2030 and create a quarter-million jobs in the process.”
Salazar announced during a February 19, 2010, meeting with governors and representatives of Atlantic coast states that he was forming a consortium to discuss a regional approach to wind energy development on the Outer Continental Shelf. All Atlantic coast states were invited to join. The Memorandum of Understanding was signed by Secretary Salazar and the governors of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina.
Together, the department and the Atlantic governors will use this agreement to facilitate federal-state cooperation for commercial wind development on the Outer Continental Shelf off of the Atlantic coast through collaborative efforts on issues of mutual interest. Under the Memorandum of Understanding, the consortium will develop an action plan that sets forth priorities, goals, specific recommendations and steps for achieving the objectives outlined in the agreement.
Interior's new Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will oversee the development of wind and other renewable energy resources on the Outer Continental Shelf. In addition to cooperation with the governors, Interior will continue to work with local, state, tribal and federal stakeholders to facilitate the commercial leasing process for offshore renewable energy development through inter-governmental task forces.
Task forces have been formally established with Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Virginia, Delaware, and Maryland, and are in process for New York, South Carolina, and Florida.