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.
In February 2002, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued a directive that all federal agencies issue and implement Information Quality Guidelines. In response to this directive, the Department of the Interior (DOI) issued and implemented guidelines to ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information disseminated by its bureaus and offices.
In order to ensure the accuracy and integrity of its published scientific information, DOI follows a robust peer review process wherein the information undergoes internal peer review and is subject to public scrutiny. DOI, its bureaus and offices, and the National Invasive Species Council maintain the highest standards possible for published information to ensure integrity and transparency.
DOI Bulletin for Peer Review
The OMB directive, Final Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review (December 15, 2004), requires that there be a "systematic process of peer review planning" and access to a list of information products for official dissemination that will be peer reviewed as either influential scientific information or highly influential scientific assessments. DOI bureaus and offices created Web sites to accommodate the requirements of the Peer Review Bulletin.