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.
Secretaries Salazar and Locke Announce Aggressive Plan To Better Integrate Science in the California Bay-Delta
Office of the Secretary
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON, DC – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke today announced an aggressive interagency plan for developing a single long term integrated Biological Opinion for the California Bay-Delta and for developing near term scientific initiatives that could be incorporated into water operations as soon as the 2011 water year.
The new plan grew out of a March 19 National Academy of Sciences assessment of two separate biological opinions issued under the Endangered Species Act by the Interior Department's Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the Commerce Department's National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). The two opinions established alternatives for reducing the effects of water management decisions on threatened and endangered species in the Bay Delta.
In a letter describing the plan, the two Secretaries noted that the new approach will allow for better future coordination in protecting endangered species and providing water distributions from the federal Central Valley Project and California's State Water Project.
“The plan announced today includes both near-term and longer-term strategies to ensure that we are coordinating to use state of the art science and to find the best alternatives to protect both endangered fish and water supplies,” said Secretary Salazar.
“The National Academy of Sciences plan pointed to specific scientific needs to improve actions that affect water supply delivery and protect endangered species,” said Secretary Locke. “We are committed to working with our state and federal partners to address these complex issues.”
The goal of the near-term strategy is to incorporate new science into the process for implementing the biological opinions in water year 2011. By the end of this week, an interagency task force based in the region will be established that will target those issues in the two existing biological opinions that were identified by the NAS Report as appropriate for further near-term scientific research. The task force will prepare a list of near-term actions by May 30, 2010.
Longer term, the plan calls for development of a single, integrated biological opinion based on a joint science program that encompasses Interior's FWS, U.S. Geological Survey, and Bureau of Reclamation; Commerce's NMFS; as well as state scientists. The integrated biological opinion will address the Bay Delta Conservation Plan and water project operations.
"We welcome the federal effort to create a single integrated biological opinion,” said Lester Snow, California's Secretary of Natural Resources. “We are committed to working with the federal agencies to enhance our mutual goal of resolving the complex and long standing issues of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta."
The Department of the Interior and the Department of Commerce will continue working diligently and in close partnership with other Federal and State agencies so that California can have a sustainable water future and protect the Delta ecosystem.