Items by Florence Williams

Landowners turn the Fifth into sharp-pointed sword
Several lawsuits say the government should compensate for land devalued in "takings" cases.
A tracker's guide
A review of "Tracking and the Art of Seeing: How to Read Animal Track and Sign', by Paul Rezendes.
Hikers are fenced out of wilderness
A housing development blocks access to Arizona's Coronado National Forest.
Western voters face clear choices
The 1992 election will redraw the West's political map, but the new shape is almost impossible to predict.
National forest grazing cuts are stalled by politics
Two Idaho and Montana studies by the Forest Service represent the first full-scale efforts by the agency to control damage caused by grazing, but substantial improvements on the range may be a long way off.
Sagebrush Rebellion II: Some rural counties seek to influence federal land use
The assumption underlying new county ordinances is that grazing permits are the "intangible" property of the permittee. Federal agencies, meanwhile, insist that grazing permits have always been a privilege, not a right.
Panels seek radiation warnings that will travel well through time
Thanks to federal environmental laws, the DOE must take into account the next 10 millennia when planning for the disposal of low-level radioactive waste from bomb-building.
A Montana forest slashes its planned timber cut
Even after Regional Forester John W. Mumma was ousted, apparently for reigning in overcutting, the 2.1 million-acre Lolo National Forest will reduce its projected timber sales by half for the next five years.
A passive town in Utah awaits its fate
Overwhelmed by the current wave of tourism, federal administrators of the public land surrounding Moab say they are unprepared to handle the environmental impacts of off-trail biking, four-wheeling and unregulated camping.
Forest Service tries to force out top official
Environmentalists in Montana and Idaho say hard-liners in Washington, D.C., forced out a reform-minded manager John Mumma, the top Forest Service official in the Northern Rockies.
Government tames its wild, destructive dam
Early this month Interior Secretary Manuel Lujan issued a decree to alter the operation of a key faucet on the Colorado River -- Glen Canyon Dam.
People for the West fronts for the mining industry
The Pueblo, Colo.-based organization boasts more than 40 local chapters throughout the West and has raised close to a million dollars in just over a year.
West's ailing ski industry turns to all-season mega-resorts
The ski industry, once welcomed in the West, is turning into a pariah. As it gets harder to make a ski hill turn a profit, developers are pushing all-season destination resorts that threaten to overwhelm their host communities and are turning many mountain towns against the ski corporations.
Revolution at Utah's grassroots: Navajos seek political power
The Navajos, like most reservation Indians, have historically been excluded from county politics by a mix of subtle and not-so-subtle barriers. But now they are creating a new political force.
Senate's new air bill would further dirty the West's air
The 1990 Senate compromise bill would increase pollution 23 percent throughout the West. It would also weaken the power of the federal government to protect the air over pristine areas.
The West's time capsules
Livestock have obliterated almost all of the West's original grasslands. But here and there, a few patches of native range survive.
Nevada-Florida land swap attracts lots of public scrutiny
To the Nevada Congressional delegation and the Interior Department, a proposed land exchange between the federal government and a defense contractor is a great deal. Nevertheless, opposition is strong.
Arizona surrenders a dam to save CAP
Arizona's congressional delegation has agreed to abandon plans for the $316 million Cliff Dam, contested by environmental groups, in exchange for those groups promising not to interfere with completion of the Central Arizona Project.
High Country News Classifieds
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