This Week at Interior
Secretary Haaland joined federal, state and local leaders in Pennsylvania this week. She highlighted the investments in President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to address legacy pollution, create good-paying union jobs, and help communities eliminate dangerous environmental conditions caused by past energy development. It's the first stop in a multi-month, multi-state tour of Appalachia to highlight critical infrastructure investments. Overall the law includes $11.3 billion for abandoned mine land reclamation projects, and $4.7 billion for orphaned well site plugging, remediation and restoration activities.
The Secretary then traveled to John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia. That's where she discussed the important role of urban wildlife refuges in conservation and community-building...she also highlighted the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s investments in the Delaware River Basin and underscored Interior's commitment to advancing environmental justice. The John Heinz refuge was the first of its kind, specifically created to provide environmental education and connect surrounding urban communities to nature.
Interior this week hosted three nation-to-nation consultations with Tribes on the implementation of President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. That law invests more than $13 billion directly into Tribal communities across the country to bolster community resilience, replace aging infrastructure, expand access to clean drinking water and help ensure that everyone has access to high-speed internet.
Assistant Secretary for Water and Science Tanya Trujillo traveled to California this week, highlighting the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s historic $8.3 billion investment in water-projects and drought resilience. She took part in a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of repairs to the Friant-Kern Canal...the 152-mile canal plays a critical role in delivering water to one million acres of highly productive farmland, and more than 250,000 people from Fresno south to Bakersfield.
Interior this week announced the Department will appoint new members to the Invasive Species Advisory Committee. That committee provides information and expert advice to inform federal government activities related to invasive species, which cause an estimated $120 billion in environmental damage every year. Addressing that threat helps advance the conservation goals of the America the Beautiful initiative, while also adding to climate resilience in communities across the country.
It was the first meeting this week of the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. The task force has primary responsibility for coordinating efforts across twenty federal agencies to combat human trafficking. During the meeting Secretary Haaland outlined Interior's work in pursuing justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous people. Human trafficking disproportionately impacts people of color, women and girls, LGBTQI+ individuals, migrants and others from historically marginalized and underserved communities.
NASA astronauts and Junior Rangers from Mt. Rainier National Park came together for some orbital questions and answers this week. The Rangers sent in pre-recorded questions for Flight Engineers Raja Chari and Kayla Barron aboard the International Space Station. They're in the midst of a planned six-month mission living and working aboard the microgravity laboratory to advance scientific knowledge and demonstrate new technologies for future human and robotic exploration missions.
And our social media Picture of the Week, you got your cool cats, then you got your *coolest* cats, like this Canada lynx at Alaska's Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge. You can tell it's a Canada lynx by its long legs, large paws, long dark tufts on the ears, and a short, black-tipped tail. The Tetlin Refuge is also home to wolf packs, grizzly bears, moose, and dozens of other species of mammals, birds, and fish.
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That’s This Week, at Interior
This Week: Secretary Haaland highlights environmental investments in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law during a visit to Pennsylvania, and underscores Interior's commitment to advancing environmental justice at the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge; Interior hosts nation-to-nation consultations with Tribes, as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law steers more than $13 billion to Tribal communities; Assistant Secretary for Water and Science Tanya Trujillo travels to California to highlight the BIL's historic $8.3 billion investment in water-projects and drought resilience; Interior will appoint new members to the Invasive Species Advisory Committee; the Secretary speaks at the first meeting of the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons; NASA astronauts and Junior Rangers from Mt. Rainier National Park come together for some orbital Q&A; and our social media Picture of the Week is one cool cat!