Items by Bruce Hamilton

High Country News in the ’70s
High Country News in the ’70s
The HCN community reflects on the ‘Me Decade.’
David Brower: Remembering the Archdruid
Conservationists mourn the recent death of David Brower, former Sierra Club director, founder of Friends of the Earth and Earth Island Institute, and passionate fighter against dams and for the wild.
Wise-use power is overblown; the real threat is apathy
Writer says the environmental movement has not lost clout yet.
Edward Abbey: druid of the arches
The sudden death last week of Edward Abbey recalled to us this superb profile of the writer by Bruce Hamilton, who was HCN managing editor in 1976, when this story appeared.
EPA shrinks from regulating tons of dust stirred up by coal mines
As coal mines proliferate, environmentalists are starting to realize that mining creates major air pollution problems, but federal agencies appear reluctant to regulate it and industry may not have the technology to control it.
Congress passes 'fantastic' park and recreation bill
In its final hours, Congress passed a $1.2 billion National Park and Recreation Act that settles several of the nation's leading environmental controversies, including the fight over Mineral King in California.
Alaska: how the House was won
A Sierra Club employee recounts his initiation as a lobbyist during the congressional battle over the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act.
Carter's water politics to strangle the West?
The Carter Administration's proposals for reforming national water policy may ruffle the longstanding laws of prior appropriation, and have Western politicians and water user groups fighting mad.
Boise rediscovers geothermal
Using geothermal energy to warm your home and heat your water may sound like a far-fetched idea, but some residents of Warm Springs Avenue in Boise, Idaho, have been doing it for 85 years.
Carter attacks dams; battle of the decade ahead?
President Jimmy Carter has asked Congress to delete funds in the next fiscal year for 19 controversial water development projects.
Wood stove revival puts damper on energy costs
Today, with rising energy costs, wood burning is probably the fastest growing form of alternative renewable energy use.
Idaho legislature axes conservation programs
The forced resignation of Earl Adams, the director of Idaho's Office of Energy, was the coup de grace in a long line of attacks by a hostile Republican-controlled legislature against efforts to set up a state energy conservation policy.
Rest-rotation range plan -- panacea of problem?
Both critics and advocates are weighing in on the U.S. Bureau of Land Management's drive to improve deteriorating range conditions on public lands in the West through a grazing system known as rest-rotation.
Utah oil shale boom: not if, but when
Unknowns are plaguing oil shale development southwest of Vernal, Utah, but the burst of optimism for oil shale in the early 1970s has many local residents saying that extraction of oil from their abundant rock is inevitable.
Grizzly critical habitat -- what will be excluded?
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has released its suggested boundaries for grizzly bear habitat in the Lower 48 States; many high country residents are up in arms because activities like logging, according to the FWS, may have to be "modified" in critical habitat.
Boulder adopts plan to slow growth
Boulder, Colorado, has become the first community in the Rocky Mountain West to attempt to slow down its growth rate by city ordinance, which will limit the amount of new housing.
Alunite-to-alumina plant proposed for southwest Utah
Unstable supplies of bauxite -- the main raw material of aluminum -- have prompted the government and industry to search for new bauxite substitutes such as alunite. Southwest Utah has that resource and residents there are apparently welcoming the industry.
Congress preserves new wild areas
A summary of the bills that passed and failed in the scramble that occurred before Congress adjourned, including legislation concerning strip mining, wild rivers, synfuels subsidies, wilderness, water pollution, and more.
Interior to designate grizzly critical habitat
The threat of the federal government designating parts of Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming as grizzly bear critical habitat has some people more frightened than if they had actually met one of the awesome creatures on the trail.
BLM caught in multiple use bind
Conflict over the Challis Planning Unit in east-central Idaho, managed by the Bureau of Land Management, is an example of the difficulties faced by that agency when it tries to balance the demands of multiple user groups.
What ever happened to the federal land use bill?
David Calfee, an Environmental Policy Center lobbyist for the federal land use planning bill that narrowly failed in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1975, gives insight into what caused the effort to falter.
Dick Randall: a life with coyotes
Dick Randall, who grew up in Wyoming's wide open spaces and at one time in his life shot hundreds of coyotes from a plane, is now an outspoken opponent of predator control.
Cartoons, counseling, and butterflies
When HCN cartoonist Rob Pudim isn't slaying social dragons, he's often out catching butterflies or helping out with Boulder's methadone program.
How to get out the conservation message
KOA-TV Science Editor Don Kinney gives tips on press releases, editorials, and other methods for spreading a conservation message.
Saving swamps for ducks and men
Although swamps have historically been viewed as unattractive and worthless, a building movement -- buoyed by federal laws -- recognizes wetlands as havens for wildlife that also hold and purify water used by humans.
A lifetime watching the wilderness
Ann and Myron Sutton are students and teachers of the wilderness, having studied hundreds of wilderness areas in nearly 40 countries and written over 20 books on the wild outdoors.
BLM farm plans hold promise, problems
Lack of clear goals for Idaho agriculture becomes more evident as the U.S. Bureau of Land Management wrestles with plans to convert thousands of acres of desert lands managed by that agency into individual private farms sanctioned by the Desert Land Act and the Carey Act.
Mineral withdrawals: death of 1,000 cuts?
A wave of controversial mining proposals has led to a call for putting certain public lands off-limits to mining, but the mining industry is concerned that too much land is being considered for these restrictions.
Court lifts Powder River injunction
The U.S. Supreme Court has lifted an injunction barring four coal companies and a railroad from proceeding with coal development in Wyoming's eastern Powder River Basin, opening the way to full-scale development of the region's coal.
High Country News Classifieds
  • CAMPAIGN MANAGER
    Oregon Natural Desert Association (ONDA), a nonprofit conservation organization dedicated to protecting, defending and restoring Oregon's high desert, seeks a Campaign Manager to works as...
  • HECHO DEPUTY DIRECTOR
    Hispanics Enjoying Camping, Hunting, and the Outdoors (HECHO) was created in 2013 to help fulfill our duty to conserve and protect our public lands for...
  • REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE, COLUMBIA CASCADES
    The Regional Representative serves as PCTA's primary staff on the ground along the trail working closely with staff, volunteers, and nonprofit and agency partners. This...
  • FINANCE AND OPERATIONS DIRECTOR
    The Montana Land Reliance (MLR) seeks a full-time Finance and Operations Director to manage the internal functions of MLR and its nonprofit affiliates. Key areas...
  • DIRECTOR OF CONSERVATION
    The Nature Conservancy is recruiting for a Director of Conservation. Provides strategic leadership and support for all of the Conservancy's conservation work in Arizona. The...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Amargosa Conservancy (AC), a conservation nonprofit dedicated to standing up for water and biodiversity in the Death Valley region, seeks an executive director to...
  • BIG BASIN SENIOR PROJECT PLANNER - CLIMATE ADAPTATION & RESILIENCE
    Parks California Big Basin Senior Project Planner - Climate Adaptation & Resilience ORGANIZATION BACKGROUND Parks California is a new organization working to ensure that our...
  • CUSTOMER SERVICE ASSISTANT - (PART-TIME)
    High Country News, an award-winning media organization covering the communities and environment of the Western United States, seeks a part-time Customer Service Assistant, based at...
  • SCIENCE PROJECT MANAGER
    About Long Live the Kings (LLTK) Our mission is to restore wild salmon and steelhead and support sustainable fishing in the Pacific Northwest. Since 1986,...
  • HUMAN RESOURCES GENERALIST
    Honor the Earth is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate based on identity. Indigenous people, people of color, Two-Spirit or LGBTQA+ people,...
  • DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    Colorado Trout Unlimited seeks an individual with successful development experience, strong interpersonal skills, and a deep commitment to coldwater conservation to serve as the organization's...
  • NEW BOOK BY AWARD-WINNING WILDLIFE BIOLOGIST, BRUCE SMITH
    In a perilous place at the roof of the world, an orphaned mountain goat is rescued from certain death by a mysterious raven.This middle-grade novel,...
  • DESCHUTES LAND TRUST VOLUNTEER PROGRAM MANAGER
    The Deschutes Land Trust is seeking an experienced Volunteer Program Manager to join its dedicated team! Deschutes Land Trust conserves and cares for the lands...
  • PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    Now hiring a full-time, remote Program Director for the Society for Wilderness Stewardship! Come help us promote excellence in the professional practice of wilderness stewardship,...
  • WYOMING COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS COORDINATOR
    The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership is seeking Coordinator to implement public education and advocacy campaigns in the Cowboy State to unite and amplify hunter, angler,...
  • ASSISTANT TOWN ATTORNEY
    Town of Jackson, Wyoming, $66,700 - $88,000 DOQ, full benefits. Law Degree Required. Rental housing options available. For a complete job description and to apply,...
  • MOUNTAIN LOTS FOR SALE
    Multiple lots in gated community only 5 miles from Great Sand Dunes National Park. Seasonal flowing streams. Year round road maintenance.
  • RURAL ACREAGE OUTSIDE SILVER CITY, NM
    Country living just minutes from town! 20 acres with great views makes a perfect spot for your custom home. Nice oaks and juniper. Cassie Carver,...
  • A FIVE STAR FOREST SETTING WITH SECLUSION AND SEPARATENESS
    This home is for a discerning buyer in search of a forest setting of premier seclusion & separateness. Surrounded on all sides by USFS land...
  • CARPENTER WANTED
    CARPENTER WANTED. Come to Ketchikan and check out the Rainforest on the coast, HIke the shorelines, hug the big trees, watch deer in the muskeg...