Items by Paul Larmer

The West is not a zoo
The Peregrine Fund has proven that it can breed and release endangered birds of prey as often as it needs to, but do we want to treat Western wildlife like a crop of annual flowers that has to be re-seeded every year?
Life in the transition zone
Longtime community activist and HCN board member Luis Torres is delighted to see environmentalists and loggers working together in the forests of his native northern New Mexico
HCN's secret past
High Country News reveals its odd historical connection with the West’s uranium obsession of the 1950s
A green obsession
Westerners, like most Americans, are deeply in love with their lawns – but in an time of increasing drought, the Kentucky bluegrass is going to have to go
'You've got me wrong': A Conversation with Forest Service Chief Dale Bosworth
Forest Service Chief Dale Bosworth talks about how his agency has changed over the years, defending current forest management policies as well as the Service’s dealings with the energy industry
Adapt or collapse
In his book Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, Jared Diamond warns about societies that overreach themselves – a warning that southern Arizona, in the midst of its tremendous real estate boom, ought to heed
Nostalgia is a moving target
Curmudgeons like Jim Stiles – owner/editor of Moab’s Canyon Country Zephyr – have a lot to teach us about why it is so important for us to cling to the West that we love
Wacky California is pragmatic leader of the West
The writer says California is the leader when it comes to alternative fuels and insistence on cleaner air
California, here we come
California has a lot to teach the Interior West – particularly about clean energy and water conservation
Norton Departs
Interior Secretary Gale Norton’s decision to resign prompts a look at Interior’s conservative counterrevolution during her tenure, along with its unintended consequences
Thank you, Gale Norton
The writer thanks Gale Norton for inspiring Westerners to form a new kind of coalition
Dear friends
HCN now has a blog; HCN’s Tucson board meeting and potluck; correction and clarification
The difficulties of cohabitation
Despite its problems and failures – many of them arising from the conflict between the United States’ growing population and our declining wildlife habitat – the Endangered Species Act is a necessary law
For Sale: The West
The writer has some suggestions for conservationists as prices for houses and timberland skyrocket
For sale: The West
As privately owned timberlands go up for sale around the West, some communities are trying to find ways to keep their forests from disappearing in a flood of development
A wish for the new year: A Scrooged Bush
The writer imagines George Bush as the ultimate environmental president
We need to store fat from the gas-feeding frenzy
The writer urges Western states to seize the moment and make the most of the gas bonanza that is enriching private companies
Storing fat from the feeding frenzy
Westerners need to prepare for the next economic bust by saving money from today’s energy boom, just as black bears store calories in the form of fat in order to get through the winter
A Western railvolution begins
The writer welcomes a shift from cars to light rail in Denver and other Western cities
Weighing our water options
As the rapidly growing city of Las Vegas, Nev., schemes to find more water, it reminds those of us who live outside big cities that we also need to rethink the way we use water
Hope for the West's open lands
The Quivira Coalition is working hard to try to preserve the West’s remaining private ranchlands – but much more needs to be done to protect this invaluable land
Boom and bust, military style
The military’s plan to close Cannon Air Force Base is being fought by nearby Clovis, N.M., a community that, like many in the West, has become spectacularly dependent on a single industry
Beyond the exurban dream
The West’s rural areas are erupting with large-lot, big, expensive homes, but the actual costs of this new rural lifestyle extend far beyond the purchase price
A call for modest reform
The time is ripe for moderate reform of the conservation easement system
Love the gas, not the drill
The writer loves natural gas but opposes drilling for it in the wrong places
The wisdom of the ground troops
If the folks who run the Forest Service listened to the wisdom of their people on the ground, disasters like the Biscuit Fire logging project would be less likely to occur
Grazing buyouts help land and ranchers
The writer praises grazing buyouts as a way to help land and ranchers
Public-lands ranchers: Should you trust this man?
Paul Larmer interviews longtime activist Andy Kerr, director of the National Public Lands Grazing Campaign, about grazing buyouts and the future of public-lands ranching
Grazing buyouts help land and ranchers
Some Western ranchers, fed up with economic problems and other conflicts, are handing over their grazing allotments to conservation groups in exchange for a healthy check
You say you want a railvolution...
Westerners may love their cars, but the region’s rapid growth means that even the most ardent car-lovers have a stake in mass transit, and in Denver’s grand experiment in light rail
High Country News Classifieds
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    Executive Director Position Announcement POSITION TITLE: Executive Director ORGANIZATION: Friends of Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument REPORTING TO: Board of Directors EMPLOYMENT TYPE: Part-time - Full-time, based...
  • HEALTHY CITIES PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    The Healthy Cities Program Director leads and manages the Healthy Cities Program for the Arizona Chapter and is responsible for developing and implementing innovative, high...
  • CONSERVATION PROGRAM MANAGER
    Grand Staircase Escalante Partners (GSEP) Conservation Programs Manager Job Opening Our Mission: Honoring the past and safeguarding the future of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument through...
  • ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR
    Grand Staircase Escalante Partners (GSEP) Associate Director Job Posting Our Mission: Honoring the past and safeguarding the future of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument through science,...
  • UNIQUE, ENERGY-EFFICIENT HOME ON ACREAGE NEAR MOSCOW, IDAHO
    Custom-built energy-efficient 3000 sqft two-story 3BR home, 900 sqft 1 BR accessory cottage above 2-car garage and large shop. Large horse barn. $1,200,000. See online...
  • OUTDOOR ADVENTURE BUSINESS FOR SALE
    Missoula Outdoor Learning Adventures (MOLA) - established and profitable outdoor adventure & education business in Missoula, Montana. Summer camp, raft & climb guide, teen travel,...
  • OJO SARCO FARM/HOME
    A wonderful country setting for a farm/work 1350s.f. frame home plus 1000 studio/workshop. 5 acres w fruit trees, an irrigation well, pasture and a small...
  • STEWARDSHIP COORDINATOR
    Join Skagit Land Trust (the Trust), a not-for-profit conservation organization based in Mount Vernon, Washington, and help protect land for people and wildlife. Skagit Land...
  • 2022 SEASONAL SCIENCE EDUCATOR
    The Mount St. Helens Institute Science Educator supports our science education and rental programs including day and overnight programs for youth ages 6-18, their families...
  • POLICY DIRECTOR
    Heart of the Rockies Initiative is seeking a Policy Director to lead and define policy efforts to advance our mission to keep working lands and...
  • CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
    Self-Help Enterprises seeks an experienced and strategic CFO
  • CONSERVATION SPECIALIST - LAND PROTECTION FOCUS
    View full job description and how to apply at
  • RIVER EDUCATOR & GUIDE
    River Educator & Guide River Educator & Guide (Trip Leader) Non-exempt, Seasonal Position: Full-time OR part-time (early April through October; may be flexible with start/end...
  • LAND AND WATER CONSERVATION DIRECTOR
    The Land and Water Conservation Director is a full-time salaried position with the Mountain Area Land Trust in Evergreen, CO. The successful candidate will have...
  • FOOD SYSTEMS ENVIRONMENTAL FELLOWSHIP
    If you were to design a sustainable society from the ground up, it would look nothing like the contemporary United States. But what would it...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Rio Grande Headwaters Land Trust (RiGHT) is seeking an Executive Director who will lead RiGHT toward a future of continued high conservation impact, organizational...
  • COMMUNITY ORGANIZER
    Help protect Montana's water quality, family farms and ranches, & unique quality of life. Work hard, meet good people, make the world a better place!...
  • NEW BOOK:
    True Wildlife Tales From Boy to Man. Finding my voice to save wildlife in the Apache spirit. 365+ vivid colorful pictures. Buy on Amazon/John Wachholz
  • CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER
    with Rural Community Assistance Corporation. Apply here: https://www.marcumllp.com/executive-search/chief-operations-officer-rcac
  • 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...