This Week at Interior
Secretary Haaland and Deputy Secretary Tommy Beaudreau joined Administration leaders in New York City to commemorate Climate Week 2023, an annual event that focuses on the challenges presented by a warming planet. In remarks at the Clinton Global Initiative, Secretary Haaland announced a $15 million commitment to the Indian Youth Service Corps and other programs supporting the next generation of conservation and climate stewards. Across town, Deputy Secretary Tommy Beaudreau joined state and federal leaders on a panel to discuss the Biden-Harris administration’s all-of-government approach to building a clean energy future that will create jobs, boost local economies, and help address environmental injustice.
The Biden-Harris administration this week announced a historic agreement to support Tribally led efforts to restore healthy and abundant salmon populations in the Upper Columbia River Basin. The agreement between the United States, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, and the Spokane Tribe of Indians will help fund ongoing efforts to test the feasibility of reintroducing anadromous salmonids in blocked area habitats in the Basin.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe broke ground on a fish passage project at Numana Dam, with funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Deputy Director Siva Sundaresan joined representatives from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Reclamation and partners to celebrate the project, which will benefit the recovery of two federally listed species, the Lahontan cutthroat trout and Cui-ui sucker in northern Nevada.
Interior this week announced nearly $40 million through the President’s Investing in America agenda to help Tribal communities plug and remediate orphaned oil and gas wells across Indian Country. This investment is a critical step in supporting Tribal land rights and economic opportunities to address legacy pollution, reduce harmful methane leaks, and tackle environmental hazards that threaten Tribal communities.
Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the Energy Department’s Grid Deployment Office this week released an Action Plan for Offshore Wind Transmission Development in the U.S. Atlantic Region. It's a set of bold actions that will catalyze offshore wind energy, strengthen the domestic supply chain, and create good-paying, union jobs. The plan outlines immediate actions needed to connect the first generation of Atlantic offshore wind projects onto the electric grid, and longer-term efforts to support needed transmission over the next several decades.
The Bureau of Land Management this week issued two new leases in the Amargosa Solar Energy Zone in Nevada -- that means the leaseholder can proceed with next steps in the development of utility-scale solar energy. In June, the BLM auctioned four parcels across nearly 24,000 acres in the Amargosa desert in the highest-yielding onshore renewable energy auction in agency history.
Secretary Haaland this week applauded the designation of Ohio's Hopewell Ceremonial Earthworks as a World Heritage Site. Hopewell is a group of eight ancient earthwork sites built between 1,500 and 2,200 years ago by Indigenous peoples now referred to as the Hopewell Culture. The vast network of precise geometrical shapes aligns with both solar and lunar cycles.
And our social media Picture of the Week, meet this hoary marmot at Rocky Mountain National Park. Turns out bears aren't the only mammals fattening up in preparation for the long winter -- hoary marmots also build up large fat stores in the summer and early fall to get them through up to 8 months of hibernation!
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That's This Week at Interior.
This Week: Interior leaders travel to New York City for Climate Week 2023; a historic agreement is signed to help restore healthy salmon populations in the Upper Columbia River Basin; ground is broken on a fish passage project at Numana Dam with funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law; Interior announces nearly $40 million to help plug and remediate orphaned oil and gas wells across Indian Country through the President’s Investing in America agenda; a new action plan for offshore energy transmission aims to strengthen the domestic supply chain, and create good-paying, union jobs; BLM advances utility-scale solar energy in Nevada; a system of ancient Indigenous earthworks in Ohio is designated a World Heritage Site; and we throw a spotlight on a chubby critter in our social media Picture of the Week!