The Rockies Today, Dec. 6

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Top news links, courtesy of Headwaters News.

Reports: Western states play large role in nation's energy independence
Chesapeake Energy, the second-largest producer of natural gas in the United States, released its "A Declaration of Energy Independence," a national energy plan, and the company is part of the Western Energy Alliance, which drafted the Blueprint for Western Energy Prosperity, which said the Western U.S. could provide enough oil and gas by 2020 to make the nation less dependent on foreign energy, if government regulations were reduced, but one analyst pointed out that there were 2,000 drilling rigs operating in October, the most since the 1980s, and thousands of drilling permits sit unused.
WyoFile.com; Dec. 6

Montana governor says bison can be moved onto reservations
Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer said Monday that Yellowstone bison can be moved to the Fort Peck and Fort Belknap reservations, after an Interior Department official assured the governor that the bison are disease free.
Great Falls Tribune (AP); Dec. 6

Wyoming appeals roadless decision
After a three-judge panel of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule, the state of Wyoming petitioned for a rehearing before all 10 judges of the 10th Circuit Court.
Casper Star-Tribune; Dec. 6

Colorado oil, gas panel hears hours of debate on hydraulic fracturing
At a hearing Monday in Denver, the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission heard arguments for and against the Commission's proposal to make companies disclose chemicals used in the drilling method known as hydraulic fracturing.
Denver Post; Dec. 6

Utah water district under fire for creating artificial stream
The Washington County Water Conservancy District is creating an artificial stream to run by its office in St. George in a riparian area created to emulate the ecosystem along the Virgin River, which will include desert plant species, and district officials said the Red Hills Desert Garden will help educate the public about the fish that live in the Virgin River and its surrounding ecosystem, but members of the Citizens for Dixie’s Future said the district should have used the funds to buy water rights to help maintain flows in the Virgin River, where three endangered fish species are found.
Salt Lake Tribune; Dec. 4

With kills lagging, Montana considers extending wolf hunt
The end of wolf season in Montana is 25 days away, with hunters having killed only 105 of the 220 allowed, and on Thursday, the state Fish, Wildlife and Parks Commission will consider extending the wolf hunt into next year.
Missoulian; Dec. 6

First in series of reports on wolverines in the Rocky Mountain West
The Wildlife Conservation Society teamed up with federal and state partners to trap and radio collar 38 wolverines, and the first in a series of reports on what scientists learned from following the animals was released on Monday.
Bozeman Daily Chronicle; Dec. 6

U.S. Senate confirms new federal district judge in Montana
Kalispell attorney Dana Christensen was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Monday to fill the position of federal district court judge to replace Judge Donald Molloy, who moved to senior status earlier this year.
Missoulian; Dec. 6

Headwaters 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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