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High Country News September 01, 1997

Feature

Radioactive waste from Hanford is seeping toward the Columbia

Two whistleblowers - safety auditor Casey Ruud and geophysicist John Brodeur - find that radioactive waste from some of the biggest, leaking storage tanks has already reached groundwater and is heading toward the Columbia River.

Dear Friends

Dear friends

Corrections; Cal Sunderland's update on radiation therapy; visitors; cougar seen in Paonia, Colo.; environmentalist Sandy Sargent dies of leukemia.

News

Injunction shakes forests

A federal court upholds a six-week ban on 20 timber sales and bars grazing from 11 Southwestern forests while judges consider charges that the Forest Service has not protected endangered species, including the southwestern willow flycatcher.

Floods hammer Southwest

Severe thunderstorms have caused flash floods in Arizona, killing people near Douglas and in Antelope Canyon, derailing a train and leading to the evacuation of residents and tourists from a Havasupai Indian village just outside Grand Canyon.

BLM gives trespassing farmers a break

Mike Austin of the BLM's Twin Falls, Idaho, office, says he is being reassigned as punishment for blowing the whistle on his boss's personal business deal with a farmer cited for plowing up public land.

What's underneath the Staircase?

Conoco begins drilling for oil on state school-trust lands located inside Utah's new Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

The Wayward West

Greenpeace USA crashes and makes extreme cutbacks; Phil Hocker leaves Mineral Policy Center; Ted Turner plans to breed Mexican wolves on his N.M. ranch; Forest Service says no to checks; Bill Yellowtail is reappointed to Denver EPA office.

An Indian casino would sit on ancient graves

On Arizona's Tohono O'odham Reservation, a controversial tribal council plan would build a casino on land where a 700-year-old village and graves are buried.

Tribe hopes to dam its way to jobs

Two dams proposed for Utah's Uinta Mountains, which would provide water and work for the Uintah Basin's Native Americans, face environmental opposition.

Utah's bumbling obscures a valid complaint

The Utah congressional delegation's continued attacks on President Clinton only serve to confuse the real issues raised by the president's declaration of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Crossing borders to save hawks

Biologist Brian Woodbridge tracks Swainson's hawks from California to Argentina, and discovers that many are being killed by pesticide-contaminated grasshoppers.

The Taylor Ranch downsizes

Zachary Taylor sells a third of the controversial Taylor Ranch - locally known as La Sierra - to an undisclosed buyer.

Greens and cowboys gang up on a mine

A copper mine planned by ASARCO for southern Arizona's Santa Rita Mountains meets fierce opposition from local ranchers, retirees and environmentalists.

Something fishy about this pollution

Environmentalists charge that escaped hatchery salmon in Puget Sound are a "living pollutant" that harms endangered wild salmon and should be regulated.

A nuclear dump proposal rouses Utah

A private company's plan to store nuclear waste on western Utah's Goshute Indian Reservation would bring money to the tribe, but cause environmental harm, Utah critics say.

Prairie dogs tunnel their way to a military stalemate

The Montana National Guard is stymied by prairie dogs threatening underground power lines and communications systems at Fort Harrison.

Book Reviews

Abnormal amphibians

Herpetologists are collecting records on malformed amphibians in an attempt to find the cause of the mutations.

Fleeting forests

The Wilderness Society is requesting a moratorium on logging in Idaho's 8 million acres of unprotected roadless forest.

Fixing Fish Creek

The Forest Service wants to restore Oregon's Fish Creek, damaged by logging, roadbuilding and landslides.

Close those roads

Environmentalists want to close some backcountry roads near Paonia, Colo., that are increasingly popular with all-terrain vehicles.

Quincy Library Group

Michael Jackson, co-founder of the Quincy Library Group, will speak Sept. 5 in Olathe, Colo.

Trailfest 1997

Hikers and trail activists will converge on Vail, Colo., Sept. 6-7 for a Continental Divide Trail Alliance conference.

Montana Environmental Information Center

Members and friends of the Montana Environmental Information Center will rendezvous Sept. 13 in the Bitterroot Valley.

Waterton-Glacier International Writers Workshop

The Waterton-Glacier International Writers Workshop will be held Sept. 25-27, in Missoula, Mont.

Great Old Broads for Wilderness

The Great Old Broads for Wilderness Annual Broadwalk and Conference will be held Sept. 29-Oct. 5 in Utah's Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Connections

The Connections conference, from Oct. 2-5, will be held in Canada's Waterton Lakes National Park and includes speaker Dave Foreman.

American Birding Association

The American Birding Association is sponsoring the Young Birder of the Year Competition.

Essays

An Idaho daily breaches the Northwest's silence over tearing down dams

The Idaho Statesman goes out on a limb with editorials suggesting that four dams on the Snake River - Lower Granite, Little Goose, Lower Monumental and Ice Harbor - be torn down to help the recovery of endangered salmon.

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West

The "sunscreen speech"; tourist questions; bats in the bleachers in St. George, Utah; little old ladies and drug smuggling; scary stories from Hanford.

Related Stories

Comment on the Idaho Statesman's editorial series

Peter Chilson editorializes on the Idaho Statesman's editorials.

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