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.
FWS Opens 40-Day Public Comment Period on Draft Restoration Plan for Injured Natural Resources at Two Superfund Sites in Hartford County, Connecticut
Last edited 4/20/2016
On December 20, 2012, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service opened a 40-day public comment period on “Draft Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment: Old Southington Landfill Superfund Site, Southington Connecticut and Solvents Recovery Service Superfund Site, Southington, Connecticut.” This Draft Restoration Plan describes proposed actions to restore natural resources and natural resource services injured by hazardous substances released from the Old Southington Landfill Superfund site and the Solvents Recovery Service Superfund site. Both sites are located within the Quinnipiac River watershed in Southington, Connecticut. By combining natural resource restoration actions for both sites, a larger, more effective and meaningful restoration can be accomplished.
Department of the Interior, represented by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is the only natural resource trustee involved in these two cases.
At the Old Southington Landfill Superfund site, mercury, cadmium and other metals were released contaminating surface waters and sediments in Black Pond. Additional wetlands at the site were destroyed during remedial activities adversely affecting aquatic organisms and migratory birds. The site connects to Quinnipiac River through an unnamed stream. A settlement of natural resource damage claims with the responsible party in 2009 provided $537,000 for restoration activities.
At the Solvents Recovery Service Superfund site, volatile organic compounds, PCBs and metals were released contaminating soils, groundwater and wetlands, including portions of Quinnipiac River. Remedial activities at the site also destroyed or degraded wetlands. As a result, migratory birds and fish were adversely affected. Three separate settlements of natural resource damage claims with multiple responsible parties in 2008 provided $289,840 for restoration activities.
A total of approximately $830,000 is now available for natural resource restoration activities from these four combined settlements at the two Superfund sites. The Draft Restoration Plan proposes two preferred projects to be undertaken in the Quinnipiac River watershed with this funding:
The first project would restore diadromous fish -- such as American shad, river herring and American eel -- to the upper reaches of the Quinnipiac River watershed by removing obsolete dams or installing fish ladders; and,
The second project would support efforts to clear and maintain a portion of the Quinnipiac River canoe trail and fund publication of an educational brochure about the River. Written comments on Draft Restoration Plan must be received by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Concord, New Hampshire, by Thursday, January 31, 2013.