Items by Ray Ring
In his own words, Libby, Mont., accountant Wayne Hirst talks about how Montana environmentalists went wrong.
In his own words, activist Bob Decker talks about Montana's environmental groups and the struggle they face in their state.
Back in the '70s, Montana led the way in progressive environmental legislation, but now with its economy faltering, those laws are being eviscerated, and environmentalists need to find a new strategy.
The Hispanic livestock cooperative, Ganados del Valle, wins a lawsuit against the Sierra Club Foundation in New Mexico's Chama Valley.
Alberta, Canada, ranchers are frustrated by the government's lack of oversight of the proliferating sour-gas plants that some say harm health and livestock.
Environmentalists, farmers and state and federal agencies try to find some kind of consensus even as each reaches for a share of the overused Platte River as it flows from Colorado, through Wyoming and across Nebraska.
The Sunnyside Mine near Silverton, Colo., is an unusual example of a community working together with miners and environmentalists to find a strategy to heal the damage.
Some say the often-picturesque ruins of mining create a historical landscape that has value whether there is pollution or not.
Plant physiologist Ray Brown works to help mining-damaged ecosystems recover - with the help of a few hardy plant species.
Lloyd Harkins, who spent his early years working in Montana mines, now devotes himself to salvaging and collecting the industrial paraphernalia of hardrock mining, from ore cars to a 78-ft. tall head frame.
The reclamation of Montana's hardrock mines will cost billions, and is complicated by the fact that no one really knows how to do it, or who should foot the bill.
Musing on the gravestones in Anaconda, Mont., a writer theorizes that one can tell whether a town is Old West or New West by the ratio of the buried to the currently alive inhabitants.
The preferential treatment Big Sky gives the pro-resort Lone Peak Lookout over the independent Big Sky Bugle is an ironic legacy for a hard-hitting journalist like Chet Huntley to leave.
A computerized key-pad locked road in Big Sky epitomizes a ski resort where the "haves" are carefully kept from the trespassing "have nots."
Big Sky founding father and famous TV newsman Chet Huntley started the resort but did not live to see what he created.
Former Big Sky ski patrolman J.C. Knaub in his own words describes the difficulties faced in trying to bring neighborhood parks and trails to Big Sky.
A Montana ski resort originally created by newsman Chet Huntley and intended to be a model of free-market, unconstrained development, is today a morass of lawsuits, environmental degradation and inefficiency.
Land swaps, like the one planned to save land near Yellowstone National Park from mining, are a bad habit with a bad history in Montana's national forests.
Hunting in the West faces public relations problems as well as questions about ethical and biological issues.
The story of whirling disease in Western trout is a story of human "improvement on nature" gone wrong.
Rodeo safety vests, buffalo in bar, intergalactic tourism, ladies' left-arm wrestling, Helen Chenoweth's staff problems, computer organizing for wilderness, killer bees.
Rising fares at Denver International Airport are changing the patterns of air travel around the West, as some airlines pull out and passengers seek other airports.
National Park Service's "Park "N' Drive Competition," RVs outnumber tents 3 to 1, Yellowstone's roadkill, drug-users in the park.