Items by Judith Lewis Mernit

The Sackett Saga
How an Idaho couple's quashed dream-home plans became a public relations nightmare for the EPA.
Water-quality standards unfairly burden rural communities
Water-quality standards unfairly burden rural communities
The plight of a small water and sewer association in rural Mora, N.M -- caught in a tangle of federal and state clean water rules it can’t afford to meet -- echoes experienced by other rural communities around the West.
Solar energy on public lands: The 80,000 have spoken
The Bureau of Land Management updates its solar energy study -- and enviros seem kind of happy
Obama message control blocks journalists covering the environment
Obama message control blocks journalists covering the environment
The Obama administration makes it harder for its environmental message to be heard when it sets up roadblocks to information and blocks media access.
Pity the Green Pioneer
Can renewable technology thrive without a national energy policy?
Speculating on solar
BLM rejects a Goldman Sachs subsidiary in Nevada
California firefighting agency gives up its Very Large Air Tanker
State chooses engines and manpower over expensive retardant-dropping DC-10
Fire fight: Forest Service explores chemical retardant hazards
Fire fight: Forest Service explores chemical retardant hazards
The Forest Service finally assesses the impacts of fire retardant chemicals, but never answers the question of how useful they really are.
Why Babbitt's advice to Obama doesn't quite hit the mark
Clinton didn't really go "green" until term two.
A nuclear watchdog pushes feds on safety
A nuclear watchdog pushes feds on safety
California Republican state Sen. Sam Blakeslee questions the Nuclear Regulatory Commission about the safety of the state’s nuclear plants.
Federal budget deal slashes key community water funds
Federal budget deal slashes key community water funds
Federal budget cuts dry up the funding for crucial community water projects.
More desert tortoises found at Mojave solar project
Discovery may slow generating station construction
Eagle Mountain: Still Not Safe From Los Angeles Garbage
The saga of a proposed landfill on the outskirts of Joshua Tree
Utah lawmakers cut off public access to information
Governor goes along with curtailing freedom of information
New national forest rule lacks rigor
New national forest rule lacks rigor
Environmentalists like the tone of the Forest Service's new draft planning rule, but worry about how - and if - it will be enforced on the ground.
A closer look at Obama's judges, federal agencies, and his approach to science and secrecy
A closer look at Obama's judges, federal agencies, and his approach to science and secrecy
A closer look at Obama's impact on federal judges, the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Energy Department and the Forest Service, as well as his administration's approach to science and secrecy.
Obama's record on Western environmental issues
Obama's record on Western environmental issues
Not everybody is happy, but the Obama administration is making slow but steady progress in dealing with the West's environmental issues.
Wilderness creates jobs too!
Interior Dept. inventories wild areas with an eye to economic impact
In the zones
BLM's solar energy study disappoints environmentalists
Solar setbacks
A controversial Southern California transmission line is unlikely to carry green power
If you can't catch it, you can't cut it
What EPA's CO2 regs will actually do
How Big Oil won California
California voters said yes to the measure that really mattered to Chevron.
A river again?
A river again?
The EPA extends Clean Water Act protection to L.A.'s urban watershed.
Victory for the Creek Freaks
The EPA extends Clean Water Act protection to the entire L.A. River
He who buys the most names wins
Nevada mining tax initiative fails to gather enough $2-a piece votes.
Balancing Nevada
A state's special legislative session gets ugly
Just in Time for Christmas: Itsy-Bitsy Solar PV
What if you could sprinkle solar cells on your hat?
California's State Parks: No New Closures
Governor unveils "fantastic news" for all Californians -- except park staff slated to lose their jobs.
It Happened in the Shrubbery
Myth-busting Southern California's Station Fire
State Parks Spread the Wealth
When city dwellers seek refuge in nature, they also boost rural economies