Items by Rocky Barker

Transforming powers
The Bonneville Power Administration has long provided the Northwest -- especially its aluminum industry -- with some of the cheapest public power, but drought, endangered salmon and the deregulated electricity market may just change all that.
The latest salmon plan heads toward a train wreck
The long-awaited federal plan for saving the Northwest's endangered salmon avoids the question of breaching dams and satisfies almost no one.
Tribes cast for tradition, catch controversy
The treaty rights of Indians from the Umatilla, Yakama, Nez Perce and Warm Springs tribes to fish for salmon in the Columbia River are coming under attack from non-Native fishermen and other river users.
Wilderness water wins round in court
The Idaho Supreme Court rules that wilderness areas have reserved water rights "by implication."
Air Force lands a deal
Idaho's Land Board turns down an environmental group's $5,000 bid in favor of the Air Force's $10 bid on the Juniper Butte area, which the Air Force seeks for a training range.
Hikes discover a road
Because of a mapping error, the Boise National Forest allows logging in the Snowbank Roadless Area near Cascade, Idaho.
Panel says fish gotta swim
Scientists say half of the Snake River's endangered salmon and steelhead should migrate naturally instead of being barged past dams, if the fish are to survive.
Grassroots grit beat 'the mine from Hell'
The land swap that will stop a gold mine right outside Yellowstone National Park is a perfect example of how grassroots protest can work.
A tough law meets tough foes
The Endangered Species Act, enormously popular at its inception in 1973, now faces serious challenges as it comes up for revision.
1995: Cecil Andrus knew how to take a stand
1995: Cecil Andrus knew how to take a stand
Former Idaho governor Cecil Andrus leaves a legacy of environmental reform - and controversy - behind him.
Imported wolves lope off into Idaho wilderness
Four wolves are returned to Idaho's Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness.
Dams spill water, salmon in Northwest
National Marine Fisheries Service orders eight Columbia and Snake river dams to spill water to help save salmon.
Judge bumps snail off endangered species list
U.S. District judge removes snail from the endangered species list for procedural reasons.
Groups say rich ranchers get free ride
Environmental groups charge that BLM land is overgrazed by cattle owned by Hewlett-Packard electronics moguls.
A dead end for the grizzly?
The question is whether the grizzly can take recovery on paper and turn it into recovery in the wild. The answer, it now appears, is not entirely up to the bear.
You knew where James McClure stood
Even as McClure stood firm on his values, he tried to work with his adversaries, and for that reason he was effective on many issues.
INEL: Beating plowshares into swords
INEL employs more than 10,000 workers, or 2.5 percent of Idaho's work force. Only the state government itself employs more people. But it comes with a legacy of pollution.
Idaho nuclear lab faces massive cleanup
The Department of Energy predicts it will take 20 years to remove the haphazardly dumped material that has already contaminated the Snake River Plain Aquifer with toxic organic chemicals and has leaked plutonium into deep sediments below the site.
Parks are increasingly vulnerable
Like lines drawn in the sand, the borders of America's national parks have not prevented the crowding and shoving of neighboring public and private landowners.
Learning to live off the land
While there is hope that the grizzly is nearing recovery in the short term, most scientists remain worried about the long haul.
Yellowstone under a microscope
The Corn-Gorte analysis and a Yellowstone Blueprint, being prepared by agencies that manage lands in the ecosystem, grew out of congressional hearings on the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem conducted in 1985.
Update on Yellowstone: Mott quietly locks horns with his boss
Park Service Director William Penn Mott doesn't agree with U.S. Interior Department official William Horn on many things, including wolf reintroduction.
Some land was reforested only on paper
Forest Service employees overstated the number of acres reforested in 1985 in 23 of 39 ranger districts studied, a U.S. Department of Agriculture audit shows.
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