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, Director Bromwich Testify on Progress of Interior's Offshore Energy Reforms
Office of the Secretary
Last edited 4/25/2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement Michael R. Bromwich testified today on the progress of reforms Interior is undertaking to strengthen management and oversight of energy development on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf.
“The reorganization we are undertaking will help ensure strong and effective management and oversight of our nation's offshore energy resources,” Secretary Salazar told the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform of the House of Representatives. “We are moving forward quickly and responsibly with reforms that are needed.”
“The fundamental changes we are making do not come easily, but they are necessary,” Director Bromwich noted. “We are committed to delivering on reforms that are needed to ensure that America's offshore energy resources are developed safely and responsibly.”
Salazar said the restructuring called for in his Secretarial Order is based on the premise that the missions within the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement – including Outer Continental Shelf resource management, safety and environmental oversight and enforcement, and revenue collection – need to be clearly defined and distinct from each other. Bromwich said the reform efforts are crucial to ensuring that Interior carries out its responsibilities effectively and in a manner that facilitates the balanced, responsible, and sustainable development of the resources entrusted to the Department.