This Week at Interior June 14, 2019

This Week at Interior June 14, 2019


This Week, at Interior Secretary Bernhardt joined Vice President
Mike Pence this week at Yellowstone National Park… during the visit, both the Vice President
and the Secretary called attention to the critical issue of deferred maintenance needed
on vital infrastructure at our National Parks. Currently there are twelve billion dollars
worth of backlogged projects, needed repairs and improvements in trails, roads, bridges,
wastewater treatment, landscaping and campsites. Secretary Bernhardt traveled to Vail Colorado
this week to speak at the Western Governors’ Association annual meeting. The Secretary, a Colorado native, said it
was great to be back home and to have such a productive discussion on park maintenance,
and other issues facing the west. Acting Deputy Secretary Kate MacGregor and
Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Tara Sweeney joined other federal officials in
Sacaton Arizona this week, holding a listening session with tribal leaders. The meeting focused on key issues in Indian
Country such as solving cold cases regarding missing and murdered Native Americans and
Alaska Natives, working to end domestic violence in the community, and ending the illegal drug
trade. Find out more at doi.gov. Meanwhile, 9 and a half pounds of heroin,
worth an estimated value of nearly six-hundred thousand dollars, were seized this week by
Bureau of Indian Affairs officer Nick Jackson and his K-9 Kofi. It happened on the Pueblo in Laguna New Mexico. Addressing illegal drugs and drug addictions
in Indian Country is one of Interior’s top priorities…get the full story at bia.gov. USGS and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration are predicting a large dead zone this summer in the Gulf of Mexico. Hypoxic, or dead zones, are areas with little
to no oxygen to sustain aquatic life, most often caused by heavy spring rainfall, river
discharge, and nutrient transport from the Mississippi River. You can find the report at usgs.gov. It’s got a long way to go, but if it’s
approved it *could* be one of the world’s largest solar projects. The Bureau of Land Management released the
initial draft environmental impact statement for the Gemini Solar Project in Clark County
Nevada. Right now plans call for 71-hundred acres
of land to produce almost 700 megawatts of energy. See the full story at blm.gov/nevada. And our Social Media Picture of the Week,
a rather skeptical looking red fox…red foxes are found throughout most of North America,
and this one comes from the Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Delaware. Thanks to Jennifer Cross of the U.S. Fish
and Wildlife Service. Make sure you follow us on Facebook, Instagram,
and Twitter. That’s This Week, at Interior.


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