Magazine
Stand Your Ground

December 20, 2004

Under increasing political pressure from the Bush administration and its appointees, some agency scientists are finding it difficult to keep both their jobs and their integrity. Also in this issue: The omnibus appropriations bill just passed by Congress contained more than a few anti-environmental riders, but not all of them survived for the president’s pen to sign.

Feature

Conscientious Objectors
Under increasing political pressure from the Bush administration and its appointees, agency scientists find it difficult to keep both their jobs and their integrity

Sidebar

Nevada BLM cleans out cleanup project manager
Earle Dixon says the Bureau of Land Management fired him because he tried to enforce environmental and public safety laws in the course of the Yerington Mine cleanup in Nevada
Fisheries agency rewards a loyal bureaucrat
Environmentalists and some of his own biologists say James Lecky sold out the endangered fish he was charged with protecting, but NOAA Fisheries has just given him a promotion

Editor's Note

Buy them some body armor
Like their military compatriots in Iraq, the American civil servants charged with managing our public lands, water and wildlife lack adequate funding, back-up, or the moral support of their higher-ups

Uncommon Westerners

Protecting the people's right of way: Public-access advocate Bill Calvert
When a gravel company locked a gate on a road into California’s Yuba Goldfields, a 70-year-old retired salesman named Bill Calvert suddenly became a citizen activist, and fought for public access to public lands

Essays

An artist's residency, unplugged
A writer spends time in a primitive cabin in the Colorado mountains, and discovers the wonder of silence and darkness

Writers on the Range

Go West, Democrats, in the path of Harry Reid
New Senate minority leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., brings to Capitol Hill the lessons learned from a hardscrabble Nevada childhood

Book Reviews

Moab uranium tailings: should they stay or should they go?
The Energy Department is calling for public comment on its plans to clean up a 130-acre pile of uranium tailings and contaminated soils just upstream from Moab, Utah, on the Colorado River
Crimes against workers
The Cyanide Canary by Joseph Hilldorfer and Robert Dugoni tells a chilling tale of an environmental crime in Idaho that ruined a worker’s life

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
Pork and mariachi; Victoria’s Secret vs. trees; Zach Mann vs. Starbucks; poaching preachers; elk poachers get popped; crimes solved in Jackson, Wyo.

Dear Friends

Dear friends
Skipped issue; High Country News open house; Boulder board meeting and potluck; corrections and clarifications

News

Riding high on political inappropriations
The omnibus appropriations bill just passed by Congress contained more than a few anti-environmental riders, but not all of them survived for the president’s pen to sign
Follow-up
Judge puts stay on initiative to keep more nuclear waste from coming to Hanford Nuclear Reservation; Phoenix Mine expansion approved in Nevada; Western governors discuss reforming Endangered Species Act
The road to nowhere
Utah’s attempt to take over backcountry roads begins to unravel, largely because of problems stirred up by the attempt to claim the remote Weiss Highway in Juab County as an R.S. 2477 road
Rulings keep the West open for business
Recent decisions not to list as endangered the white-tailed and black-tailed prairie dogs and the greater sage grouse open the door to increased energy exploration and development in the West
City slaps back at property-rights measure
In response to Oregon’s recently passed Measure 37, Bend, Ore., adopts a rule that allows people to sue their neighbors if nearby development reduces property values
The little bill that... can't
Despite nearly unanimous support for designating the Ojito Wilderness Area, New Mexico Sen. Pete Domenici, R, is stalling over reserved water rights and – according to critics – trying to undermine the Wilderness Act
Lawsuits swarm around Yellowstone snowmobiles
As soon as the National Park Service announced its new snowmobile rules – which slightly reduce the number of vehicles allowed in Yellowstone and Grand Teton – lawsuits began flying from both sides of the political divide
Anasazi outpost dodges the drill
Hovenweep National Monument in remote southeastern Utah narrowly escapes an attempt to lease nearby land for oil and gas drilling
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