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High Country News March 15, 1999

Feature

Selling off the Promised Land

In Montana, the Church Universal and Triumphant re-invents itself as its charismatic founder, Elizabeth Clare Prophet, retires, and new leadership offers part of the sect's Royal Teton Ranch for conservation easements and federal land trades.

Dear Friends

Dear Friends

Almost fooled by a fax; cold weather drop-ins; name that greaseball; "Letters from a Stranger" and other books.

News

Julia Butterfly won't come down

Activist Julia "Butterfly" Hill has lived for more than a year in a 1,000-year-old redwood near Stafford, Calif., to protest the cutting of old-growth trees.

Toxic cleanup turns up frogs

Endangered red-legged frogs have taken up residence in a toxic-waste dump near Santa Maria, Calif.

Indian money: Where is it?

Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt held in contempt of court for stonewalling a class-action lawsuit aimed at tracking down billions of dollars his department collected from grazing, oil, gas and timber on Indian reservations.

The Wayward West

INEL missing 600 boxes of documents; enviros sue USFWS on behalf of goshawk; Wyoming relaxes standards for cleaning up industrial sites; battle continues over proposed open-pit gold mine in Wash.'s Okanogan Highlands; two Colorado lynx die.

Paying for a gold mine

Dakota Mining Corp. left an expensive, toxic mess behind when it abandoned its Stibnite gold mine in Idaho's Payette National Forest.

Locals work to tame the Air Force

Activist Grace Potorti has spent the last 15 years as a watchdog on the military in Nevada, and her efforts have helped to bring about reform at Nellis Air Force Base.

Chaos reigns in Idaho wildlife agency

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission, created to oversee the state Department of Fish and Game, is under attack for supporting the breaching of four Snake River dams to help endangered salmon.

Paddlers want onto "the Everest of rivers'

Conservationists and boaters are battling over American Whitewater's attempt to open Yellowstone's rivers to kayaking.

State senate says voters weren't very smart

Montana legislators are trying to find ways to get around the recently passed voter initiative 137, which halts new or expanded cyanide leach gold mines.

Here comes a wayward wolf

A wandering wolf sighted in northeastern Oregon's Blue Mountains will be recaptured and returned to central Idaho, where she was originally released into the wild.

Oil wells in my backyard?

In western Colorado's La Plata County, locals fight for a moratorium on gas development until the state studies the impacts of the methane drilling that many say is making their lives miserable.

Book Reviews

Mormons on the land

The anthology "New Genesis: A Mormon Reader on Land and Community" features essays by contemporary Mormons who seek a reconciliation between their faith and the Utah landscape.

Just go away

Craig Denton's "People of the West Desert" uses words and photographs to document the quirky, stubborn people of the West Desert of eastern Nevada and western Utah - one of the West's emptiest landscapes.

Green versus gold

"Green Versus Gold: Sources in California's Environmental History," edited by Carolyn Merchant, is a useful history that activists will find inspirational.

Deciphering the ditches

José A. Rivera's "Acequia Culture: Water, Land and Community in the Southwest" is a valuable reference on the acequia system of ditch irrigation and the Hispanic communities it nourishes.

Help arrives for the ailing Alamosa

The Capulin, Colo.-based Restore Our Alamosa River is working with the national group, Water Keepers Alliance, to heal the polluted Alamosa.

Adopt-a-ferret is under way

The BLM will introduce an adopt-a-ferret program in Colorado to aid in the restoration of the endangered black-footed ferret.

Are salmon bear essentials?

Some biologists say that the decline of salmon in the Northwest has drastically altered the diet of the region's grizzly bears.

The big picture

F.E. Bill DuBois has taken photos of Nevada mines from his plane for 24 years - a visual history that is now being exhibited in California.

Wirth Chair for Environmental and Community Development Policy

Nominations are sought for Wirth Chair for Environmental and Community Development Policy awards, due by April 15.

22nd International Film Festival

The world's best wildlife films will be showcased at the 22nd International Film Festival April 17-24, in Missoula, Mont.

Honoring the Mother, Healing Global Wounds Spring Gathering

A conference on "breaking the nuclear chain" at the Nevada Test Site, May 7-10, will include nonviolence training.

A Culture to Sustain Us: Creating a Center that Holds

This year's Sitka Symposium will feature "A Culture to Sustain Us: Creating a Center that Holds," June 17-23, in Sitka, Alaska.

Spring Action Training Camp

The Cove/Mallard Coalition in Idaho offers hands-on experience at its workshops, May 26-31, in becoming an in-the-woods activist.

Nebraska National Forest

The national forests of Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming need volunteers to do conservation work in the outdoors.

Cyanide Uncertainties: Observations on the Chemistry, Toxicity, and Analysis of Cyanide in Mining Related Waters

The Mineral Policy Center offers a free pamphlet on the hazards of mining.

Dangers of exploring abandoned mines

A workbook about the dangers of exploring abandoned mines is available free to youth groups and educators.

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West

Radioactive tumbleweeds at Hanford; reporters on environmentalists; brothel for sale; student newspaper under fire in Salt Lake City; are Vegans a gang in Sandy, Utah?; "truth in slaughtering" labels on furs; stranded on a ski lift; Idaho women in gov't.

Related Stories

A biography of Prophet's most recent life

Elizabeth Clare Prophet's most recent incarnation has led her through four marriages, the founding of the Church Universal and Triumphant and now a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease that forces her to step down from the leadership of the sect.

Church picks and chooses to create a belief system

The theology of the Church Universal and Triumphant is a smorgasbord of world religions that the new church leadership is trying to repackage in a more accessible form.

Church lands will help bail out bison

The Church Universal and Triumphant wants to work with the state and federal government on the management of the bison that stray from Yellowstone onto the church's Royal Teton Ranch.

Bison may get ground to stand on

Highlights from the Church Universal and Triumphant's proposal to allow bison to roam free on the Royal Teton Ranch.

On the Web, church chats up a storm

The internal debate over the Church Universal and Triumphant's recent changes is reflected in cyberspace, where Web sites air opinions pro and con.

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