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.
Trustees Settle Natural Resource Damage Claims Arising from Hazardous Substances Releases at Waco Subsite, Cherokee County NPL Site, Kansas
Last edited 4/26/2016
Mine tailings, washed from an impoundment at the Waco Subsite, shown here in January 2004, are a source of hazardous substances releases at the Waco Subsite of the Cherokee County NPL site in southeastern Kansas. Photo credit: John Miesner, FWS.
On June 6, 2012, the U.S., on behalf of the Department of the Interior, and the State of Kansas settled natural resource claims against E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company for injuries to natural resource and natural resource services caused by hazardous substances releases into navigable waters at the Waco Subsite of the Cherokee County NPL site in southeastern Kansas. This settlement was embodied in a Consent Decree entered by the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas.
The natural resource trustees in this case include the U.S. Department of the Interior, represented by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the State of Kansas, represented by Department of Health and Environment and the Secretary of the Department of Health and Environment, and.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency placed the Cherokee County Superfund Site on the National Priorities List in 1983. The Site, comprising 115 square miles in southeastern Kansas near the borders with Oklahoma and Missouri, has been divided into 7 subsites: Badger, Baxter Springs, Crestline, Galena, Lawton, Treece and Waco. The Waco Subsite, located about 6 miles north of Riverton, Kansas, covers about 560 acres. Cow Creek and an unnamed tributary to Cow Creek run through the Waco Subsite.
Mines and other properties owned by E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company and its predecessors-in-interest have released and continue to release hazardous substances -- including lead, cadmium and zinc -- into the environment at the Waco Subsite and into Cow Creek. These hazardous substances releases have injured natural resources including: groundwater, surface water, sediments, terrestrial resources, resident and migratory birds, fish, macroinvertebrates and other biota.
Under the final settlement in the Consent Decree, E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company will:
Pay $181,852.00 to be used by the natural resource trustees for the assessment, planning, restoration, rehabilitation and/or acquisition of the equivalent of injured natural resources at the Waco Subsite and area surface waters and for the long term management of these restored natural resource in accordance with the Cherokee County Restoration Plan;
Pay $12,505.00 plus interest to reimburse DOI for associated damage assessment costs; and,
Pay $58,382.00 to reimburse the State for associated damage assessment costs.
The total monetary value of the settlement is $252,739.00.