Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.
Montana Chamber of Commerce urges Helena to avoid coal controversy
The Helena City Commission voted 4-1 to consider at its meeting on June 4 writing the Army Corps of Engineers to request that it add the Capital City to any analysis it does about running coal trains through Montana to ports on the West Coast, but the Montana Chamber of Commerce is opposing such actions, saying that the opposition to shipping coal overseas is more about ending coal production entirely in the state.
Helena Independent Record; May 24
Utah congressman: NPS documents don't support uranium mine ban
U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop said documents he has obtained from the National Park Service indicate that at least some of the agency's employees said that the draft environmental impact statement did not support the 20-year ban on uranium mining put in place around the Grand Canyon.
Salt Lake Tribune; May 24
BLM to expand use of fire breaks in area of Idaho
In the 1990s, the Bureau of Land Management began creating green "fire breaks" by planting a mix of perennials that don't ignite easily along lands on public roads in its Shoshone District in Idaho, and the agency plans to expand that program into the Jarbidge and perhaps the Burley area as well.
Twin Falls Times-News; May 24
USFS crew blasts down beetle-killed trees in Montana forest
It took a crew of U.S. Forest Service workers about two hours to rig 37 trees along Hahn Creek Road in the Helena National Forest in Montana with explosives and blast them down. The article has live video of the trees being blasted down.
Missoulian; May 24
Wyoming to pitch cistern proposal to Pavillion residents
Next week, Wyoming officials will meet with Pavillion-area residents and offer to put in water cisterns where groundwater contamination precludes them from using that water, and is reportedly in talks with Encana Corp., the company that is drilling for natural gas in the area, to help subsidize the cost of filling those cisterns.
Casper Star-Tribune; May 24
Three-year grizzly bear study in Montana's Cabinet-Yaak area under way
A team of researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey has begun a three-year study of the grizzly bear population in the Cabinet-Yaak Ecosytem in Montana, which will collect hair samples at 800 scent-baited hair corrals as well as hundreds of other naturally occurring sites, like posts, poles and trees bears rub against, and conduct DNA tests of those samples.
Kalispell Daily InterLake; May 24
Colorado city launches '15-minute' transportation plan
Durango city officials are working on a plan to connect sidewalks, bicycle trails and transit stops in such a way that it will allow residents to get around the Colorado city in 15 minutes or less.
Durango Herald; May 24
In 2009, gun-related deaths topped traffic accident deaths in Utah
Utah officials said that a decline in traffic deaths, not a rise in gun-related fatalities, was responsible for gun deaths edging out traffic fatalities in 2009.
Salt Lake Tribune; May 24
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.