Public Lands

Senate opens a path to drill the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
Senate opens a path to drill the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
However, several more steps would have to happen for drilling to be authorized.
West Obsessed: The Bundy trial looms in Las Vegas
West Obsessed: The Bundy trial looms in Las Vegas
Editor Tay Wiles unpacks how the legal dispute embodies this political moment.
Coexistence between wolves and livestock is a delusion
Coexistence between wolves and livestock is a delusion
When it comes to public lands, native wolves should get preference.
Go ahead, wander your way
Go ahead, wander your way
Glamping, Pokémon Go and selfies. There’s no wrong way to do wilderness.
With more monuments, Republican backlash mounts
With more monuments, Republican backlash mounts
A proposed bill moves to weaken executive power of the Antiquities Act.
For tribes, new designations are culturally monumental
For tribes, new designations are culturally monumental
Obama created national monuments at Bears Ears and Gold Butte, sites with huge significance to Native Americans.
U.S. House changes its rules to ease federal land transfers
U.S. House changes its rules to ease federal land transfers
The Western movement to transfer federal lands scores an early victory in the new Congress.
West Obsessed: Obama’s region-wide legacy
West Obsessed: Obama’s region-wide legacy
The staff of High Country News discuss the 44th president’s impact on the West’s land, energy and the environment.
Bears Ears a go — but here’s where Obama drew the line
Bears Ears a go — but here’s where Obama drew the line
The designation’s concessions are unlikely to appease ardent opponents.
A tribal coalition wins a monument for Bears Ears
A tribal coalition wins a monument for Bears Ears
While consensus supporting a designation grew, many Utah politicians argued that the president’s action is an abuse of power.
The ‘chickenization’ of beef
The ‘chickenization’ of beef
Obama’s efforts to help small-scale ranchers competing against Big Ag were blocked and ultimately fell short.
Obama’s lasting legacies in the West
Obama’s lasting legacies in the West
Under the 44th president, the West re-examined its relationship to energy and the climate.
Trump’s Interior pick confounds conservationists
Trump’s Interior pick confounds conservationists
Montana Rep. Ryan Zinke evokes Roosevelt, but his record has veered away from environmental protection.
Trump’s Cabinet choices reflect deep Koch influence
Trump’s Cabinet choices reflect deep Koch influence
A rundown of the people with ties to ALEC, the Koch brothers and federal land transfer legislation.
Second round of Malheur defendants face conspiracy charges
Second round of Malheur defendants face conspiracy charges
Federal prosecutors are moving ahead, despite the first trial’s acquittal.
How we investigated the National Park Service’s history of sexual harassment
How we investigated the National Park Service’s history of sexual harassment
A methodology of our yearlong series about how the agency treats women.
How the National Park Service is failing women
How the National Park Service is failing women
The agency tasked with safeguarding our greatest public lands has neglected to protect its workers.
It’s not the Wild West anymore. Look before you shoot.
It’s not the Wild West anymore. Look before you shoot.
Carrying a gun in the backcountry isn’t the issue—responsible use is.
The other land transfer effort
The other land transfer effort
After more than a century, some Western states receive school trust lands.
Feds to send conciliators amid tensions over Dakota Access
Feds to send conciliators amid tensions over Dakota Access
In Bismarck, officials describe a chaotic mix of law enforcement and protesters.
West Obsessed: Trump’s cross-purposed energy policy
West Obsessed: Trump’s cross-purposed energy policy
The staff of High Country News discuss the inherent paradoxes in the president-elect’s campaign promises.
Obama’s rush to the end
Obama’s rush to the end
Keeping track of rulemaking, policy decisions and other last actions before the Trump administration’s inauguration.
How Ammon Bundy got acquitted in Oregon
How Ammon Bundy got acquitted in Oregon
At the Malheur trial, Bundys were acquitted, but what will happen in Nevada?