Groups file lawsuit seeking to stop Idaho wolf, coyote hunting derby
On Monday, WildEarth Guardians and other environmental groups filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Idaho seeking an injunction to stop the planned coyote and wolf hunting derby scheduled in Salmon on Dec. 28-29.
Idaho Statesman (AP); Dec. 24
U.S. Senate panel passes Montana senator's bill on cabin-permit fees
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee last week voted to advance to the full Senate Montana U.S. Sen. Jon Tester's Cabin Fee Act, which would limit future fee increases for cabin sites on U.S. Forest Service lands.
Great Falls Tribune; Dec. 24
USFWS releases new plan for black-footed ferrets in 12 states
Black-footed ferrets were thought to be extinct after 1981 until a solitary enclave of the carnivores that feed primarily on prairie dogs was found in Wyoming near Meeteetse, and on Monday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released its plan to restore the ferrets across a half a million acres in Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.
Missoulian; Dec. 24
Hundreds of marriage licenses issued in Utah to same-sex couples
Since last Friday's decision by U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby that tossed Utah's law defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman, same-sex couples began queuing up at county clerks' offices across the state to get marriage licenses, with approximately 700 such licenses issued since then, although some counties are declining to issue such licenses as those county officials said the judge's ruling is not a clear-cut authorization to do so.
Deseret News; Dec. 24
Idaho-based Micron Technology rolls out revolutionary processor
The Automata processor recently announced by Idaho-based Micron Technology at the Supercomputing 13 conference in Denver is about the size of a postage stamp, and is capable of crunching thousands of bits of unstructured data.
Idaho Statesman; Dec. 24
Former USFWS biologist: Wyoming elk feedgrounds disaster in the making
Bruce Smith, a longtime biologist at the National Elk Refuge, gives Idaho credit for phasing out its elk feeding operations and said that Wyoming's persistence in continuing to feed elk during the winter will likely cause an epidemic of chronic wasting disease, which is always fatal, and could force the state into an aggressive euthanization campaign to stop the spread of the disease.
Jackson Hole News & Guide; Dec. 22
Western universities team up on wood-to-fuel project
Both of Montana's universities, as well as universities in Wyoming, Idaho and Colorado have received a $10 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to find a way to convert woody biomass into fuel, with the first step finding a reliable, sustainable source of that woody biomass.
Missoulian; Dec. 24
Alberta-bound megaload now parked in Idaho
The first of three massive pieces of equipment bound from Oregon's Port of Umatilla to Alberta's oilsands operations has made the 315-mile trip in Oregon to Idaho, where it will stay parked at the junction of U.S. 95 and Idaho 55 until Friday night, as the second megaload begins its journey in Oregon.
Idaho Statesman; Dec. 24
Developer of Wyoming wind farm says BLM's eagle-kill estimate too high
The Power Company of Wyoming LLC, the developer of the $5-billion Chokecherry/ Sierra Madre in Wyoming near Rawlins, said the Bureau of Land Management's estimate that what could become the United States' largest wind farm project would kill an estimated 46 to 64 eagles annually is simply too high, and that the steps the company is planning to take to reduce avian deaths will reduce that number substantially.
Denver Post (AP); Dec. 22
Colorado releases list of businesses licensed to sell recreational pot
On Monday, the Colorado Department of Revenue's Marijuana Enforcement Division released the list of 136 businesses licensed to sell recreational marijuana under the state's new law that takes effect Jan. 1 legalizing adults' use of recreational marijuana.
Boulder Daily Camera; Dec. 22
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.