July 2, 2001
The unexpected power shift in the U.S. Senate raises environmentalists' hopes that the high-level nuclear waste dump proposed for Yucca Mountain in Nevada, which once seemed unstoppable, may not be a "done deal" after all.
House passes Interior appropriations bill; Coeur d'Alene Indians own lower third of lake; Wind River Reservation tribes want electoral districts redrawn; Neal McCaleb can fix BIA trust fund problems; eco-arsonist Jeffrey Michael Luers sentenced in Oregon.
In Phoenix, Mark Warren Sands is charged with burning down eight trophy homes, but the June arsons that burned three brand-new, vacant luxury homes in Tucson's Pima Canyon Estates remain a mystery.
Montana elk-rancher Len Wallace, angry at Initiative 143 banning commercial hunts on game farms, is foiled in his attempt to give his herd to the Crow Indians, because of laws set up to halt the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease.
In Wyoming, Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest Supervisor Mary Peterson bans sport shooting of prairie dogs at Thunder Basin National Grassland.
Twenty tribes file suit against the state of Washington, saying that the state violates treaty rights by not repairing the thousands of culverts that prevent endangered salmon from returning to their spawning grounds.
More than 7,000 gallons of diesel fuel accidentally dumped in a water-quality monitoring well at Copper Mountain ski resort, Colo., have yet to be found.
Residents of Nevada's Amargosa Valley, not far from Yucca Mountain, seem to be mostly ambivalent over the prospect of the high-level nuclear waste dump opening.