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.
Environmental and Health Impact of Uranium Mining on Navajo Lands
Director, Bureau of Indian Affairs
U.S. Department of the Interior
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
U.S. House of Representatives
Oversight Hearing on
Health and Environmental Impacts
Of Uranium Mining on Navajo Lands
October 23, 2007
Good morning, Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee. My name is Jerry Gidner, and I am the Director for the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) at the Department of the Interior. I am here today to testify about the United States' trust responsibility and the future involvement we may have with the uranium mine cleanup on Navajo lands.
The BIA manages approximately 56 million acres of land held in trust for individual Indians and Indian tribes in the lower 48 states and Alaska, including the lands of the Navajo Nation. The Navajo Nation, constituting approximately 27,000 square miles and stretching across the states of Arizona, Utah, and New Mexico, contains one of the largest uranium ore deposits in the world. For nearly 40 years – from the 1940s to the late 1970s – the United States Atomic Energy Commission contracted with private mining companies to produce uranium ore on Navajo Nation land in order to sustain the country's nuclear weapons development program.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has conducted a number of investigations and removal actions to address human health and environmental risks on Navajo lands. In doing so, the EPA works closely with the Navajo Nation and frequently with the BIA as a coordinating agency.
In addition, the Department of Energy (DOE) has statutory authority to assist with the remediation of uranium mill tailings pursuant to the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA). The DOE may assist in cleanup of mill tailing sites, including numerous "vicinity properties" contaminated by uranium mill tailings. The DOE has now completed its remediation of several uranium mills on the Navajo Nation and may only involve itself in associated groundwater concerns at this point. The Navajo Nation has also conducted site investigations and emergency response actions at uranium sites on Navajo Nation lands.
The Department of the Interior's Office of Surface Mining (OSM) has provided funding to address some hazards at abandoned uranium mining sites pursuant to the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA). Consistent with the trust responsibilities of the United States to the Navajo Nation, OSM and BIA have provided assistance to the Navajo Nation in sealing some mine openings and addressing physical safety hazards associated with abandoned uranium mines. The BIA is currently remediating the Tuba City, Arizona landfill, located on Navajo and Hopi lands; the landfill is contaminated with radionuclides derived from uranium mining/milling, among other things. As we have done, we will continue to offer our assistance and services to the Navajo Nation
This is a government-wide response to the United States' trust responsibility on the Navajo Nation's lands. That concludes my statement, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have.