Spring is coming early in 3/4 of national parks, according to a new study. Awesome? Not so much. As flowers bloom earlier every year, it’s disrupting the link between the wildflowers and the arrival of birds, bees, and butterflies that feed on and pollinate the flowers. In Shenandoah, an earlier spring is giving invasive plants a head start, and they’re displacing native wildflowers, leading to costly management issues.
Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
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.
Trustees Open 45-Day Public Comment Period on Draft Restoration Plan for Wildlife Injured by Hazardous Substances Releases from 3 Mine Sites in New Mexico
Last edited 4/20/2016
On January 16, 2013, the federal and State natural resource trustees opened a 45-day public comment period on “Draft Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment for the Chino, Cobre, and Tyrone Mine Facilities.” This Draft Restoration Plan presents 21 natural resource restoration alternatives evaluated by the trustees and identifies 3 priority tiers for funding projects intended to restore wildlife and wildlife habitat injured by the release of hazardous substances from the 3 mine sites in Grant County, New Mexico.
The natural resource trustees in this case include:
State of New Mexico, represented by New Mexico Office of Natural Resources Trustee; and,
U.S. Department of the Interior, represented by Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The Chino, Cobre and Tyrone mines are copper mines near Silver City, Grant County, in southwestern New Mexico. Various operations at the mines -- such as tailings, waste rock, ore and leach stockpiles, mine waters and seepage -- released hazardous substances including sulfuric acid, copper and other metals. The trustees found that these hazardous substances caused injury to natural resources and natural resource services including terrestrial resources such as soils and vegetation, surface water resources and associated wildlife habitat, migratory birds and wildlife.
The trustees settled natural resource damage claims with Freeport-McMoRan Corporation and affiliated companies in a Consent Decree entered by the U.S. District Court for the New Mexico District in February 2012. This settlement required Freeport-McMoRan to:
Pay $5,500,000 in natural resource damages;
Pay $59,750.99 for unreimbursed past assessment costs; and,
Transfer the deed to 715 acres of land south of City of Rocks, New Mexico, owned by Freeport McMoRan Chino Mines Co., to the State of New Mexico.
The transferred land, which is adjacent to City of Rocks State Park, is to be managed for conservation by New Mexico State Parks.
In the Draft Restoration Plan, the Trustees propose to use the monetary settlement to fund a diverse portfolio of wildlife-focused restoration projects. These projects include a mix of natural resource restoration actions designed to protect and restore wildlife habitat. Migratory birds were identified as the primary wildlife resource injured therefore preferred projects in the Draft Restoration Plan will specifically benefit migratory birds and waterfowl habitat.
Written comments on the Draft Restoration Plan must be received by New Mexico Office of Natural Resources Trustee by Monday, March 4, 2013.