Rockies Today, April 5

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Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

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BLM, Wyoming ranchers reach deal on wild horse herds in Red Desert
A federal district court judge on Wednesday approved the settlement of a lawsuit brought by the Rock Springs Grazing Association against the Bureau of Land Management, which calls for wild horse numbers not to exceed 1,050 wild horses in four herd areas in southwest Wyoming.
Casper Star-Tribune (AP); April 5

Utah's dry winter this year a rerun of last year
Snowpack levels in Utah's mountain ranges are averaging about 60 to 70 percent of normal, soils are dry from last year's drought and reservoir levels are 20 percent lower now than they were last year at this time, and state officials are gearing up for a rough wildfire season — again.
Salt Lake Tribune; April 5

Texas company pitches oil-shipping plan to Wyoming county commission
Houston-based Genesis Oil is building a truck-to-pipe offloading system near Douglas, and a representative of the company told Converse County commissioners that Genesis is contemplating a truck-to-rail offloading system at the same site, the fourth such facility planned in Wyoming to move oil by rail.
Casper Star-Tribune; April 5

EPA rolls out new rules for recreational dredge miners in Idaho
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released its new regulations for recreational gold miners who use small dredging systems in Idaho that includes a prohibition on such mining in the Salmon River, main stems of the biggest rivers in the state and on all waters passing through tribal lands.
Idaho Statesman (AP); April 5

After Utah rejects water pact, experts debate Nevada's options
On Wednesday, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert declined to sign an agreement that would have allowed Nevada to pump 21 million gallons of groundwater from an aquifer that lies on the states' border south to Las Vegas, leaving Nevada with a few options, including suing Utah citing bad-faith negotiations, reopening talks on the water agreement or taking the dispute to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Salt Lake Tribune; April 5

Zion National Park reports sore mouth disease in its bighorn sheep herd
Sore mouth disease usually affects lambs in bighorn sheep herds, and Zion National Park officials said they will have to let the common disease take its course in the Utah herd.
Salt Lake Tribune; April 5

Parachute-area residents as Colorado to take over water testing at spill site
Following the discovery of a spill at Williams Midstream's natural gas processing plant in Parachute, water samples taken near the spill site and just 10 feet from Parachute Creek were found to have extremely high levels benzene, and residents in the area asked Colorado to take over the water monitoring, as it is now being done by a private contractor with ties to the plant operator.
Aspen Times (Post Independent); April 5

Subdivision on inholding in Wyoming national forest goes before Lincoln County
The Lincoln County Commission will hold a hearing April 24 on the "BlindBull Meadows" development, which proposes to build 29 homes on 73 acres of land along Greys River within the Bridger-Teton National Forest.
Jackson Hole Daily; April 5

Mountain West News is a project of the Center for the Rocky Mountain West at The University of Montana. It provides a daily snapshot of news and opinion in the Rocky Mountain region of North America, giving the changing mountain West a tool to understand itself and a platform for the exchange of ideas.

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