New research questions effectiveness of prescribed burns
William Baker, a fire and landscape ecologist at the University of Wyoming, co-authored a paper with Mark Baker on their research that compared reports from agents of the federal General Land Office created in the mid-19th century on landscapes in Oregon, Colorado and Arizona with present-day conditions, and concluded that reducing fuels doesn't help limit the severity of fires much, and that big fires are inevitable and promote species diversity.
New York Times; Sept. 18
Idaho Wool Growers Association a plaintiff in grazing lawsuit in Idaho
The Idaho Wool Growers Association, industry groups and individual ranchers filed a federal lawsuit in Idaho against the U.S. Forest Service over its plan to protect bighorn sheep by reducing domestic sheep grazing in the Payette National Forest.
Idaho Statesman (Lewiston Tribune); Sept. 18
Montana land board approves lease to allow coal mine to expand
The Montana State Land Board made quick work of approval of a 10-year lease to Signal Peak Energy that will allow the company to expand its coal mine near Roundup.
Missoulian; Sept. 18
Idaho wildfire jumps fireline, threatens dozens of homes
The Karney Fire, which was first reported in Boise County around 4:30 p.m. Monday, destroyed one home on Monday, and jumped a fireline this morning, prompting additional evacuations in the Wilderness Ranch subdivision in the Idaho county.
Idaho Statesman; Sept. 18
Appeals court to hear Rocky Mountain Park wolf reintroduction case on Colorado campus
The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear two cases this week on the University of Colorado campus in Boulder, with a patent case on Wednesday's docket, and on Thursday, the court will hear arguments in the lawsuit filed by WildEarth Guardians against the National Park Service for not considering reintroduction of wolves into Rocky Mountain National Park as an option for controlling elk numbers.
Denver Post; Sept. 18
At hearing on Northern Gateway pipeline, emissions estimates vary widely
At the federal hearing in Edmonton on Monday on Enbridge, Inc.'s proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, which would carry bitumen from Alberta's oilsands country west to a port on B.C.'s coast, estimates about the carbon emissions of the project were all over the map, with one engineer saying that Enbridge must consider the "wells-to-wheels" life cycle of the bitumen when figuring emissions costs, while Enbridge engineers said the pipeline should be charged with emissions associated only with the construction and operation of the pipeline.
Edmonton Journal; Sept. 18
Alberta company plans train-loading facility to increase oil-by-rail shipments
Gibson Energy Inc. of Calgary announced Monday that it had an agreement with a "major unit train developer" to develop a train-loading facility near the Hardisty pipeline hub in Alberta that would allow the shipment of up to 60,000 barrels per day of Alberta crude by rail to U.S. markets.
Calgary Herald; Sept. 18
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.