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Happy 165th birthday to the Department of the Interior! On March 3, 1849, President Polk signed the legislation into law creating the department.

Today, the Department manages the Nation’s public lands and minerals including providing access to public lands and the Outer Continental Shelf, for renewable and conventional energy; is the steward of 20% of the Nations lands, including national parks, national wildlife refuges, and the public lands; is the largest supplier and manager of water in the 17 western states and a supplier of hydropower energy; and upholds federal trusts to Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives. It is responsible for migratory wildlife conservation; historic preservation; endangered species conservation; surface-mined lands protection and restoration; mapping, geological, hydrological, biologic science for the Nation and financial and technical assistance for the Insular Areas.

To learn more about the Department, click here.

Photo of Bryce Canyon National Park by Kuang-Yu Jen

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Sun rising over Bryce Canyon.