Rockies Today, April 12



Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.


Colorado congressman's Healthy Forest bill advances in the House
On Thursday, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulation heard testimony on Colorado U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton's Healthy Forest Management and Wildfire Prevention Act, which would increase state control over federal forest lands, and give governors authority to declare areas "high risk" to expand collaborative efforts to reduce wildfire potential, and sent the bill to the full House Natural Resources Committee for action.
Durango Herald; April 12

Colorado Senate panel OKs bill for state-owned firefighting air tankers
Senate Bill 245, co-sponsored by Sens. Steve King, R-Grand Junction and Cheri Jahn, D-Wheat Ridge, would authorize the purchase of three air tankers to help fight wildfires in the state, and the Senate Agriculture Committee voted 5-0 to send the bill to the Senate Appropriations Committee, where the $25-million price tag may temper legislators' enthusiasm.
Durango Herald; April 12

Massive landslide stops production at Kennecott Utah mine
Kennecott Utah Copper personnel said it's unknown when operations at the Bingham Canyon Mine will resume, following a massive landslide at the mine.
Deseret News; April 12

Colorado county appeals BLM's Thompson Divide lease decision
The Pitkin County Commission said it will file an administrative appeal of the Bureau of Land Management's decision to suspend energy leases on the Colorado's Thompson Divide, effectively extending those natural gas leases.
Aspen Times; April 12

Oil, gas leasing an option in latest USFS study of Wyoming Range
A number of oil and gas leases on the Wyoming Range were bought out by a coalition of environmental and conservation groups last year and retired, but the U.S. Forest Service is analyzing an additional 45,000 acres in that area of the Bridger-Teton National Forest for potential oil and gas leasing.
Casper Star-Tribune; April 12

Wyoming residents question lack of fine for last year's blowout of oil well
The determination of the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission that the oil well blowout that occurred last year and forced dozens of residents near Douglas from their homes did not violate any laws is being questioned by those residents, given that human error was determined to be the cause of the blowout.
Casper Star-Tribune; April 12

For 2nd time in 56 years, Colorado water system sets quotas on availability
The Colorado-Big Thompson Project has 12 reservoirs in its system, making it one the largest water supply project in Northern Colorado, and for only the second time in the 56 years the system has been in place, the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District is setting quotas on water availability due to low reservoir levels and scant snowpack to raise those reservoir levels.
Greeley Tribune; April 12

Colorado offers $3.1M in tax credits to lure California biofuel firm to state
California-based Cool Planet Energy Systems, which touts a process to cost-effectively make gasoline out of plant waste or biomass, is scouting for a new location for its corporate headquarters and for its first high-capacity manufacturing plant, and on Thursday, the Colorado Economic Development Commission voted to offer the company $3.1-million in tax incentives to bring their business to the Centennial State.
Denver Post; April 12

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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