Mercury's surface in "enhanced color," a color scheme created to emphasize color differences. This is not what Mercury would look like to the human eye, but by applying mathematical analysis to images, color differences can be accentuated beyond those visible to a person.
Mount Rushmore National Memorial under construction.
The workers had to endure conditions that varied from blazing hot to bitterly cold and windy. Each day they climbed 700 stairs to the top of the mountain to punch-in on the time clock. Then 3/8 inch thick steel cables lowered them over the front of the 500-foot face of the mountain in a "bosun chair." Despite the dangers, no one was killed during the project.
Otters in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska.
The sea otter population of Glacier Bay has increased dramatically in the past 20 years. Ecologists consider sea otters a keystone species here. Otters consume vast quantities of clams, urchins, crabs, and other invertebrates and their presence creates ripples through the ecosystem. NPS photo.
Every day someone like you becomes a wildland wildfire fighter, a teacher, a trail-builder, a museum curator, or a park ranger. Discover your opportunities in national parks. Come to play. Come to learn. Come to serve. Develop your environmental leadership skills. Find a job. Be the next generation to preserve and protect these great places.
With more than 80% of Americans living in urban areas, urban parks are more important than ever. The father of American landscape architecture, Frederick Law Olmsted, said of urban parks:
It is one great purpose of the Park to supply to the hundreds of thousands of tired workers, who have no opportunity to spend their summers in the country, a specimen of God's handiwork that shall be to them, inexpensively, what a month or two in the White Mountains or the Adirondacks is, at great cost, to those in easier circumstances.
The implementation plan builds upon the Strategy, which was issued by President Obama on February 11, 2014, and reaffirms our Nation's commitment to work in partnership with governments, local communities, nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector to stem the illegal trade in wildlife.
Incorporating recommendations from the Secretary of the Interior's Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking, the framework will guide and direct new and ongoing efforts of the Task Force in executing the Strategy.
Upon release of the implementation plan, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell said, “Poaching and illegal trade in wildlife have long been a threat to species ranging from elephants to tigers, but they have escalated into an international crisis in the past decade as demand has grown and organized crime has discovered how lucrative this trade can be. We have reached a pivotal moment where we must take effective action or risk seeing iconic species go extinct in the wild. With this national strategy, we are taking the steps needed to both shut down illegal trade, including raising awareness and support through our trade agreements, while helping source countries crack down on poaching.”
Building upon the Strategy's three objectives – strengthening enforcement, reducing demand for illegally traded wildlife, and expanding international cooperation – the plan lays out next steps, identifies lead and participating agencies for each objective, and defines how progress will be measured.
Continuing efforts to implement and enforce administrative actions to strengthen controls over trade in elephant ivory in the United States;
Leveraging partnerships to reduce demand both domestically and abroad; and
Strengthening enforcement capacity, cooperation, and partnerships with counterparts in other countries.
The President's Task Force to Combat Wildlife Trafficking has made significant strides toward meeting the objectives since the National Strategy was announced one year ago. A fact sheet describing some of these important steps related to law enforcement, demand reduction and international cooperation can be found here.
The United States is also using trade agreements and trade policy to press for groundbreaking commitments on wildlife trafficking and wildlife conservation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) with eleven other countries in the Asia-Pacific region and the Transatlantic Partnership Agreement (T-TIP) with the European Union (EU). These commitments would be fully enforceable, including through recourse to trade sanctions, with far-reaching benefits for species like rhinos, sharks, and pangolins.