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  • Will Montanans reject their bagman?

    Even Montanans critical of Sen. Conrad Burns admit he’s a genius at bringing home the pork – a fact that may make it harder for his Democratic challenger, Jon Tester, in the November election.

  • Fractures on the right

    National pundits say the nation’s political parties are moving toward the extremes, but in the West, Republicans – unhappy with some far-right politicians – seem to be heading back to the middle.

  • Energy workers, union members protest drilling

    In Wyoming, oil and gas workers and the Wyoming AFL-CIO have joined environmentalists, ranchers and homeowners in protesting the sale of energy leases in the Wyoming Range of Bridger-Teton National Forest

  • Raising the bar for lawyers

    Washington has become the third state to require that would-be lawyers taking the bar exam know more than a little about Indian law.

  • Cutting trees to save the forest

    Chris Kelly’s environmental group, The Conservation Fund, is carefully logging its own redwood trees in order to save forests and salmon in Northern California.

  • Border restoration’s odd couple

    In southwestern Arizona, the U.S. Border Patrol is working with Cocopah Indians and environmentalists to restore a degraded, crime-ridden wetland called Hunters Hole.

  • The new land rush

    In the Rocky Mountain West, old mining claims are suddenly the newest real estate hot spots.

  • A dustup over weed control

    Some environmentalists are unhappy about the BLM’s plans to spray herbicides for weed control, but many public-land managers say it’s the only way to tackle the invasion of flammable weeds.

  • Private landowners become lords of the public estate

    A landowner locks a gate on a road into Arizona’s Aravaipa Canyon, highlighting an increasingly bitter debate over access to public lands in the West

  • Follow-up

    Army Corps of Engineers will have to release water from Columbia and Snake river dams to help salmon; Montana mining ban is not a property "taking"; kinks in plan to drill for natural gas at Colorado nuclear site.

  • Writing a comment letter? Better make it good

    The Bureau of Land Management is tightening its standards on what it considers worthwhile, "substantive" public comments from citizen activists

  • Wyoming wildlife faces twin threats

    A major pronghorn migration route near Pinedale, Wyo., gets squeezed by new subdivisions and oil and gas drill rigs

  • Powered by pond scum

    Colorado inventor Jim Sears is among those researchers fascinated by the possibility that algae farms in the Southwest could provide a source of biodiesel.

  • Sans petrol

    Willits, Calif., is one of a growing number of communities trying to prepare for a post-oil world by becoming economically and agriculturally sustainable.

  • The West’s public lands are open for business

    A close look at the data shows that, despite some restrictions, oil and gas drilling is on the rise in the West.

  • Energy illusions

    A BLM report issued in late 2006 appears to show that less land is available for energy exploration now than in 2003, but a closer look shows that appearances are deceiving.

  • Condemned

    In Idaho and Wyoming, old eminent domain laws allow private entities to condemn landowners’ property – as Peter and Judy Riede discovered when J.R. Simplot Co. announced plans to expand its phosphate mine and build a road across their ranch.

  • Excremental gains?

    Kern County, Calif., is trying to prevent Los Angeles sludge from entering the county, where it is used to fertilize farmland, and the resulting stink is raising all kinds of questions about how we handle human waste

  • Environmental change

    Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., does an about-face and moves to protect New Mexico’s Valle Vidal from oil and gas drilling

  • River Redux

    Six decades after Friant Dam killed off the San Joaquin River’s spring-run chinook, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Friant Water Users Authority are working with the federal government to restore both the fish and the river

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