This Week at Interior February 11, 2022


This Week at Interior  

As part of President Biden's Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, Interior this week announced nearly $725 million in fiscal year 22 funding to reclaim abandoned mine lands across 22 states and the Navajo Nation. The funding won't just eliminate dangerous environmental conditions and pollution caused by past coal will create thousands of good-paying union jobs and foster economic opportunity.  

Deputy Secretary Tommy Beaudreau traveled to Provo, Utah, this week where he highlighted the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investments in water infrastructure and ecosystem restoration. He also toured the Provo Delta Restoration Project and construction of Utah Lake System water delivery pipelines. Interior recently announced $50 million for the Central Utah Project Completion Act to accelerate construction of delivery systems to provide clean, reliable drinking water to over 100,000 Utah residents, and complete the Provo River Delta Restoration Project, providing habitat restoration for threatened fish species and improving recreational access to the area’s natural environment. 

Interior and the Department of Agriculture this week joined the Western Governors Association to launch a Task Force on Collaborative Conservation. The task force will enhance collaboration and coordination across jurisdictions, focusing on managing resources to improve environmental outcomes for communities across the West. 

Interior this week wrapped up a series of engagement sessions focused on addressing the drought crisis in the Klamath Basin. The session brought together Tribal leaders, members of Congress, state and federal officials including California Governor Gavin Newsom and Oregon Governor Kate Brown, and local stakeholders. Secretary Haaland highlighted the $162 million dedicated to helping address severe drought conditions in the Klamath Basin provided by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law...she also underscored the Department’s commitment to minimize drought impacts and develop a long-term plan to facilitate conservation and economic growth.  

The nation’s wildlife and wild places will benefit like never before thanks to a record-breaking $1.5 billion in excise taxes paid last year by manufacturers of hunting and fishing equipment. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this week announced those funds will be disbursed through the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program. That program provides critical funding to support state and local outdoor recreational opportunities, and wildlife and habitat conservation. The core value of the program is fostering cooperative partnerships between federal and state agencies, working alongside hunters, anglers, and other outdoor interests, to enhance recreational opportunities while advancing sustainable resource goals. It’s a vision that is core to President Biden’s America the Beautiful initiative. 

As part of the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to stop the spread of COVID-19, the Bureau of Indian Education will distribute 600,000 surgical masks for K-12 students at all 183 BIE-funded schools. BIE will also distribute an additional 600,000 N95 respirators to K-12 schools for staff and adults in students' households, as well as to Haskell Indian Nations University and Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute for students and staff.  

A new blog post from Interior this week details the Department's ambitious agenda to center equity and inclusion in all of our work. That comes as part of the Biden-Harris administration effort to create an all-of-government approach to advance environmental justice. Check it out at 

Happy Birthday, U.S. Fish and Wildlife was this week in 1940 that Interior consolidated the Bureau of Fisheries and the Bureau of Biological Survey into one agency, calling it the Fish and Wildlife Service. With roots tracing back as far as 1871, the Service’s programs are some of the oldest efforts dedicated to natural resource conservation.  

And our social media Picture of the Week, the world-famous "fire fall" at Yosemite National Park in California. That's not fire or lava flowing over Horsetail Falls, just water catching the sunset at exactly the right time and the right angle. If weather conditions are favorable, this year's fire fall should happen later this month. 

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That's This Week, at Interior 

This Week: This Week: Interior announces nearly $725 million in fiscal year 2022 funding to reclaim abandoned mine lands; Deputy Secretary Beaudreau highlights the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s investments in Utah’s water infrastructure and ecosystem restoration; Interior and the Department of Agriculture join the Western Governors Association to launch a Task Force on Collaborative Conservation; we’ll tell you about engagement sessions focused on addressing the drought crisis in the Klamath Basin; $1.5 billion is on the way to benefit outdoor conservation and recreation programs coast to coast; more than a million masks to help stem the spread of COVID-19 are  going out to Bureau of Indian Education students, staff and families; the latest blog post from Interior details our ambitious agenda to center equity and inclusion in everything we do; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service turns 82; and the world famous “fire fall” at Yosemite National Park is our social media Picture of the Week!