The Rockies Today, Nov. 16



Top news links, courtesy of Headwaters News.

Energy IG suggests overhaul of national laboratory structure
On Tuesday, Gregory H. Friedman, the inspector general for the Energy Department issued a report calling for a broad overhaul of the nation's 16 separate national laboratories, and warned of "painful" job cuts that could have considerable impact in states such as Idaho, New Mexico, Washington, South Carolina and Tennessee, where the laboratories and their contractors provide significant numbers of jobs.
New York Times; Nov. 16

Federal regulators point out pipeline problems in Montana, Wyoming
After this year's high water in Montana that led to a rupture of a pipeline under the Yellowstone River that cost Exxon Mobil an estimated $135 million to clean up, companies are scrutinizing areas where pipelines and rivers and streams intersect, as is the U.S. Transportation Department's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, which issued a report Tuesday that pinpointed problems with pipelines at seven major river crossings and hundreds of smaller crossings in Montana and northern Wyoming.
Missoulian (AP); Nov. 16

Agriculture spending bill could reopen horse slaughterhouses
The current version of the U.S. Department of Agriculture appropriations bill does not contain a ban on funding federal inspectors for slaughterhouses that process horses, the first time since 2005 that provision is not in the USDA spending bill, and proponents of reopening those slaughterhouses were confident that the spending bill would be passed as is.
Seattle Times; Nov. 16

Federal lawmakers block USDA's revamp of school lunch program
Lawmakers working on a compromise spending bill for the Agriculture Department blocked funding for the USDA's overhaul of the school lunch program thaat cut starches and added more fruit and vegetables.
New York Times; Nov. 16

Idaho's new rules on drilling lure Arkansas oilman to the state
Idaho put new rules in place on oil and gas drilling on Tuesday that are in line with other states' regulations, and Arkansas oilman Richard Brown said his company, Weiser-Brown, will now move forward with its plan to tap into gas resources on the 15,000 acres it has under lease in southwest Idaho.
Idaho Statesman; Nov. 16

Green House Data to build wind-powered data center in Wyoming
Wyoming-based Green House Data announced plans to build a new data center adjacent to its existing data center in southeast Cheyenne, and that the new 25,000-square-foot data center will be powered entirely by wind.
Casper Star-Tribune; Nov. 16

Movement of megaloads along interstate in Montana ramp up
Imperial Oil is stepping up the transport of oversized pieces of mining equipment bound for its operations in Alberta, with two to three loads moving along interstates each day in Montana.
Missoulian; Nov. 16

Report takes Yellowstone National Park's 'vital signs'
The Yellowstone Center for Resources' third "Natural Resource Vital Signs" report on Yellowstone National Park breaks down circumstances at the park in four different areas: ecosystem changes caused by fire and other drivers; air and water quality; native species and stressors.
Billings Gazette; Nov. 16

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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