Items by Matt Jenkins

Where there's fire, there's global warming
Climate scientist Anthony Westerling is working to illuminate the connection between rising global temperatures and the increasing ferocity of the West’s forest fires
A world built on groundwater
In Ogallala Blue: Water and Life on the Great Plains, William Ashworth examines the effects of groundwater dependency in a dry land
Making room for wolves
In the anthology Comeback Wolves, 50 Western writers talk about the complex emotional – and practical – responses evoked by the return of this iconic predator
The Perpetual Growth Machine
Phoenix, Ariz., is determined to disprove the idea that the West will someday run out of water and that every boom has to come to an end
Norton eases road claims
Outgoing Interior Secretary Gale Norton has opened the door for counties and states to claim control of roads crossing federal lands
The Latest Bounce
Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner John Keys resigns; Phoenix finally gets some rain, but drought continues; Bonneville Power Administration must keep the Fish Passage Center open; Forest Service looks to outsource more jobs
Pipeline and dam dreams
The Utah Legislature has approved money for "preconstruction" work on a new dam for the Wasatch Front and a new pipeline for the booming city of St. George
Columbia River dams revived
In Washington, tribes have been shut out of a plan for new Columbia River dams that are being touted as good for salmon as well as farmers
The Latest Bounce
EPA abandons attempt to regulate hydraulic fracturing; BLM briefly cuts forestry school funding and Republican Rep. Greg Walden grills logging critic Dan Donato; California regulator tries to stop ecological crash in San Francisco Bay-Delta
Wilderness: The new anti-nuclear weapon
The designation of a new wilderness area in Utah – the Cedar Mountain Wilderness -- may make it harder for nuclear power plant operators to ship radioactive waste to the Skull Valley Goshute Indian Reservation
The Latest Bounce
White Pine County, Nev., seeks federal help to fight Las Vegas groundwater grab; fired workers suddenly regain jobs at National Renewable Energy Laboratory; marijuana is Washington’s No. 8 agricultural product
Taking the law into their own hands
Citizens use a little-known legal doctrine called qui tam to fight energy company profiteering – and make money in the process
Colorado River states reach landmark agreement
The seven states of the Colorado River Basin have come to a groundbreaking agreement that, among other things, will allow cities such as Las Vegas to lease water from out-of-state farms during times of drought
The Latest Bounce
Pete McCloskey plans run against Rep. Richard Pombo; 11 alleged eco-terrorists indicted; BLM gives six companies chance to work on oil shale production; Gray Development buys expensive state land in north Phoenix.
Trouble in the Delta
The San Francisco Bay-Delta Authority votes to disband, even as the Bay-Delta itself -- beset by high water exports, disappearing fish and declining water quality – may be dying
The Latest Bounce
Petroglyph boulders moved for controversial Albuquerque highway; Hilmar Cheese can drill "test well" for its wastewater; Richard Pombo’s plan to fast-track oil shale stymied; wilderness vs. helicopter skiing in Wyoming
Energy companies score massive refund checks
A federal judge has ordered the government to buy back offshore oil and gas leases that energy companies say can’t be developed, leading some to wonder if the BLM will have to do the same with leases in potential wilderness areas
Roadless forest plans draw crowds — and lawsuits
Concerned citizens overflow a meeting in Delta, Colo., as a crucial deadline for protecting roadless areas in national forests nears
Tapping into energy's fringe
As energy companies go after "unconventional" natural gas – such as tight-sands gas and coalbed methane –the environmental impacts are becoming increasingly apparent
The Final Energy Frontier
The end of the oil and gas era may be in sight, but the current energy boom in the West means that a rough and wild ride is still ahead
The Latest Bounce
Richard Pombo wants new offshore drilling; Nevada gold mines spew mercury across West; grazing fees don’t pay for program; judge slams Forest Service over refusal to look at environmental impacts of fire retardant
The Latest Bounce
Assistant Interior Secretary Rebecca Watson resigns; Texas oil baron Oscar Wyatt indicted in Iraq oil-for-food scandal; Congress won’t fund "bunker buster" nukes; Fish and Wildlife OK with lynx mortality at proposed Wolf Creek ski village
The Latest Bounce
Whistleblower Earle Dixon’s complaint denied; Colorado moose has chronic wasting disease; Colorado wind power gets cheaper than traditional electricity; court nixes BuRec’s 10-year Klamath River plan
The Latest Bounce
Gold mining gets go-ahead near South Pass, Wyo.; Eric Griego loses election to Albuquerque Mayor Marty Chavez; W.R. Grace tells Libby, Mont., residents they’re not that sick; farm-labor broker Global Horizons ordered to pay penalties, back wages and taxes
The Latest Bounce
U.S. Geological Survey gets Yucca Mountain research funding cut; logging halted on Giant Sequoia National Monument; New Mexican politicians fight proposal to drill in Valle Vidal
‘Tributary issue' could force a seven-state showdown
Nevada is fighting with the four Upper Basin states of Colorado, Utah, Wyoming and New Mexico over its right to use water from the Colorado River’s tributaries, in particular the Virgin and the Muddy rivers
Squeezing Water from a Stone
With only a tiny share of the Colorado River available to it, Las Vegas decides to get the water it needs from elsewhere in the state – underneath the rural high-desert Basin and Range country
The Latest Bounce
California Coastal Commission rejects 36 oil and gas leases; EPA proposes two-stage regulation for radiation exposure at Yucca Mountain; developer’s attorneys have to pay legal fees in lawsuit against environmentalist; wannabe border patrol volunteer lose
Follow-up
Judge Dee Benson reconsiders the Norton-Leavitt 2003 wilderness settlement; New Mexico’s Otero Mesa back on the oil and gas auction block; former NOAA administrator James Lecky accused of doctoring science in controversial biological opinion
A tasty history of the Southwest
In Gardens of New Spain, William W. Dunmire tells the story of how Mediterranean plants and foods came to North America and changed the way its inhabitants eat
High Country News Classifieds
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