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.
The mission of the U.S. Department of the Interior's (DOI) Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration Program (NRDA Restoration Program) is to restore natural resources injured as a result of oil spills or hazardous substance releases into the environment. In partnership with affected state, tribal and federal trustee agencies, the NRDA Restoration Program conducts damage assessments which are the first step toward resource restoration and used to provide the basis for determining restoration needs that address the public's loss and use of natural resources.
Once the damages are assessed, the NRDA Restoration Program negotiates legal settlements or takes other legal actions against the responsible parties for the spill or release. Funds from these settlements are then used to restore the injured resources at no expense to the taxpayer. Settlements often include the recovery of the costs incurred in assessing the damages. These funds may also be used to fund damage assessments in future incidents. All actions taken by the NRDA Restoration Program on behalf of citizens of the United States are done with the goal of restoring injured natural resources.
This web site is designed as a guide to information about the Department's NRDA Restoration Program:
Authorities that govern the program;
Damage assessment cases;
Informational library containing tools and links to sources of information for the field of natural resource damage assessment and restoration.