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

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

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

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
Calendar

Letters

High Country News Classifieds
  • NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY
    All positions available: Sales Representative, Accountant and Administrative Assistant. As part of our expansion program, our University is looking for part time work from home...
  • COMMUNICATIONS ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR
    Position Title: Communications Associate Director Location: Flexible within the Western U.S., Durango, CO preferred Position reports to: Senior Communications Director The Conservation Lands Foundation (CLF)...
  • HISTORIC HOTEL & CAFE
    For Sale, 600k, Centennial Wyoming, 6 suites plus 2 bed, 2 bath apartment. www.themountainviewhotel.com Make this your home or buy a turn key hotel [email protected]
  • MAJOR GIFTS OFFICER
    High Country News, an award-winning news organization covering the communities and environment of the Western United States, seeks a Major Gifts Officer to join our...
  • RUBY, ARIZONA CARETAKER
    S. Az ghost town seeking full-time caretaker. Contact [email protected] for details.
  • VICE PRESIDENT, LANDSCAPE CONSERVATION
    Basic Summary: The Vice President for Landscape Conservation is based in the Washington, D.C., headquarters and oversees Defenders' work to promote landscape-scale wildlife conservation, focusing...
  • BRISTOL BAY PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    Seeking a program director responsible for developing and implementing all aspects of the Alaska Chapter's priority strategy for conservation in the Bristol Bay region of...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The National Bighorn Sheep Center is looking for an Executive Director to take us forward into the new decade with continued strong leadership and vision:...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Powder Basin Watershed Council, based in Baker City, Oregon, seeks a new Executive Director with a passion for rural communities, water, and working lands....
  • CLEAN ENERGY PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    Type: Permanent, fulltime Reports to: Executive Director Travel: Some overnight travel, both in-state and out-of-state required Compensation (beginning): $44,000 to 46,500/yr., DOE plus excellent benefits...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    Powder River Basin Resource Council, a progressive non-profit conservation organization based in Sheridan, Wyoming, seeks an Executive Director, preferably with grassroots organizing experience, excellent communication...
  • ADOBE HOME
    Passive solar adobe home in high desert of central New Mexico. Located on a 10,000 acre cattle ranch.
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    Eastern Nevada Landscape Coalition, based in Ely, Nevada is looking for a new executive director to replace the long-time executive director who is retiring at...
  • STEVE HARRIS, EXPERIENCED PUBLIC LANDS/ENVIRONMENTAL ATTORNEY
    Comment Letters - Admin Appeals - Federal & State Litigation - FOIA -
  • LISA MACKEY PHOTOGRAPHY
    Fine Art Gicle Printing. Photo papers, fine art papers, canvas. Widths up to 44". Art printing by an artist.
  • LOG HOME IN THE GILA WILDERNESS
    Beautiful hand built log home in the heart of the Gila Wilderness on five acres. Please email for PDF of pictures and a full description.
  • CARETAKER
    2.0 acre homestead needing year-round caretaker in NE Oregon. Contact [email protected] for details.
  • SEEKING PROPERTY FOR BISON HERD
    Seeking additional properties for a herd of 1,000 AUM minimum. Interested in partnering with landowners looking to engage in commercial and/or conservation bison ranching. Location...
  • COPPER STAIN: ASARCO'S LEGACY IN EL PASO
    Tales from scores of ex-employees unearth the human costs of an economy that runs on copper.
  • EXPERT LAND STEWART
    Available for site conservator, property manager. View resume at http://skills.ojadigital.net.