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 Jewell Lauds Enactment of Bipartisan Energy Legislation to Encourage Development of Small Hydropower, Support Rural Jobs
Office of the Secretary
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell issued the following statement following President Obama's signature of two bills that are expected to create rural jobs and encourage the development of small hydropower projects, including within existing Bureau of Reclamation conduits, waterways and canals. The Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act and the Hydropower and Rural Jobs Act were signed into law today.
"I applaud the bipartisan efforts that will support the President's Climate Action Plan and our all-of-the-above energy strategy to boost domestic energy production, reduce our dependence on foreign oil and begin to slow the effects of climate change," Secretary Jewell said. "By streamlining the permitting of small hydropower on existing Bureau of Reclamation facilities, these laws will help expedite the development of renewable and affordable energy in the West and support the creation of rural jobs. There is more work to be done, but these efforts will help the Department of the Interior as we work to permit enough renewables on public lands to power more than 6 million homes."
The Hydropower and Rural Jobs Act provides greater certainty for the generation of clean, renewable hydroelectric power at those Reclamation sites through the regulatory process and administrative streamlining.
"The enactment of this legislation underscores our efforts to develop renewable energy on canal and conduit sites managed by Reclamation across the west," said Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Michael L. Connor. "This unlocks the door to developing new sources of energy at hundreds of our facilities across the West while creating new jobs at the same time."