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.
Safeguarding America’s Lands and Waters from Invasive Species: A National Framework for Early Detection and Rapid Response: On February 18, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Interior released "Safeguarding America’s Lands and Waters from Invasive Species: A National Framework for Early Detection and Rapid Response." The report, called for by the White House Council on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, urges the National Invasive Species Council (NISC)—an interagency body created by Executive Order 13112—to provide leadership in early detection and rapid response for invasive species. The report outlines five recommendations to operationalize a national EDRR framework and strengthen EDRR actions from the local through to the national level. The Office of Policy Analysis and the NISC Secretariat co-led the development of the report which involved numerous NISC member departments as well as state and tribal governments and other stakeholder groups. Full Report | Press Release | EDRR Resource Guide
A Strategy for Improving the Mitigation Policies and Practices of The Department of the Interior: On April 10, 2014, Secretary Jewell released "A Strategy for Improving the Mitigation Policies and Practices of The Department of the Interior," developed by the Energy and Climate Task Force to implement mitigation policies and practices at the Department that can more effectively encourage infrastructure development while protecting natural and cultural resources. The report, co-authored by the Director of the Office of Policy Analysis, outlines four priority areas of ongoing and future work, including geospatial assessments, landscape-level strategies, compensatory mitigation programs, and monitoring and evaluation. The strategy also identifies near-term actions that the Department will take to put the report's recommendations into practice. Full Report|Press Release|Video
DOI Economic Contributions Report: Every year since 2009 the Department (led by the Office of Policy Analysis) has released an annual Economic Contribution Report highlighting the current economic impact of Interior’s existing programs and activities, and underscores the impact Interior has on a stateby-state basis. Results can now be viewed visually on a new data visualization site here. FY 2015 | FY 2014 Report | FY 2013 Report | FY 2012 Report | FY 2011 Report | FY 2010 Report | FY 2009 Report
Results from a Survey of Conservation Banking Sponsors and Managers: The Office of Policy Analysis recently conducted an analysis of the USFWS conservation banking program, to identify any institutional or other impediments to creating habitat conservation banks, and develop potential options for encouraging the expanded use of conservation banking. As part of this analysis, a survey of representatives from USFWS habitat conservation banks was completed in 2016. This report summarizes the survey results and provides conclusions and recommendations for the conservation banking program. Full Report
Amenity Values of Proximity to National Wildlife Refuges: A peer-reviewed national study released by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), shows that in urban areas across three regions of the country proximity to a national wildlife refuge increases home value and helps support the surrounding community's tax base. The study, managed by the Office of Policy Analysis for the USFWS and conducted by economists at North Carolina State University, found that within eight miles of an urban center, homes located within half a mile of a refuge are valued three to nine percent higher than homes located farther from refuges. Full Report
Report to Congress on the Recreation Fee Program (May, 2012): The Office of Policy Analysis led the federal inter-agency recreation fee Working Group in preparing the Triennial Report to Congress on Implementation of the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act. The report highlights projects funded by recreation fees, provides budgetary and visitation statistics, describes agency policies to implement the Act, and includes considerations about the future of the recreation fee program. 2012 Triennial Report | 2015 Triennial Report
Wildland Fire Literature Review: In June 2012, the Office of Policy Analysis released a report titled Wildland Fire Management Program Benefit-Cost Analysis - A Review of Relevant Literature. Wildland fire policy is an important issue at Interior. The Office of Wildland Fire develops department-wide policies, and four Interior bureaus have relevant management responsibilities: BIA, BLM, FWS, and NPS. This report provides background information on six key topics: policy, budget trends, measuring performance, the role of economic analysis, wildland fire models, and data availability. Full Report
Arctic Resilience Report: The Arctic Resilience Report (ARR) was formally launched on November 25, 2016 in Stockholm, Sweden. The ARR initiative was co-led by the Office of Policy Analysis, on behalf of the United States, and Sweden. It was produced under the auspices of the Arctic Council, in cooperation with an international team of researchers and indigenous organizations. Through the analysis of several case studies, the ARR identifies strategies for enhancing the resilience of Arctic communities and ecosystems to the rapid changes that are occurring in the region. Full Report | Press Release | Arctic Council Announcement
Managing for the Future in a Rapidly Changing Arctic: On April 4, 2013 the Interagency Working Group on Coordination of Domestic Energy Development and Permitting in Alaska, chaired by the Department of the Interior, released a report to the President, Managing for the Future in a Rapidly Changing Arctic. The report, co-authored by the Director of the Office of Policy Analysis, calls for an integrated management strategy and highlights the need for a coordinated approach – termed “Integrated Arctic Management”– that uses the best available science to integrate cultural, environmental and economic factors in decision-making about development and conservation. Executive Summary | Full Report | Press Release | Video
The Office of Policy Analysis plays a leadership role in advancing understanding of adaptive management through chairing the Adaptive Management Working Group and coordinating efforts to develop guides for managers. The Adaptive Management Working Group (AMWG) sponsored the development of the Adaptive Management,the U.S. Department of the Interior Technical Guide,first published in 2007 and revised in 2009, to clearly and consistently define adaptive management and describe conditions for its implementation. In April 2012, the AMWG released Adaptive Management, the U.S. Department of the Interior Applications Guide, to provide through case studies, a better understanding of how adaptive management can be implemented in the field.