Magazine
Gold from the Gas Fields

November 28, 2005

Energy companies are reaping billions in the West today, but few states are making sure that enough of that wealth stays at home and is invested wisely. Also in this issue: The long and carefully planned campaign to protect the Ojito Wilderness in New Mexico holds useful lessons for wilderness activists across the West.

Feature

Gold from the Gas Fields
Energy companies are reaping billions from the West, but few states outside Wyoming are making sure that wealth stays at home and is invested wisely.

Sidebar

Energy companies plow some profits back into Western ground
Raymond Plank, chairman of Apache Corp., says responsible companies like his prove that the energy industry can reduce its environmental impacts and give more back to local communities

Editor's Note

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

Uncommon Westerners

'Sticking around' for an alpine valley
Attilio Genasci has devoted himself to preserving land in Sierra Valley, Calif., where he has lived and farmed for 96 years

Essays

‘Death is stingless indeed and as beautiful as life’
Writer and activist Michael Frome looks back on more than 80 years of a life filled concern for the environment and social justice

Book Reviews

Yellowstone fires still ignite controversy
In Scorched Earth, journalist Rocky Barker describes firsthand the chaos and consequences of the Yellowstone fires
Life — and death — in grizzly country
Werner Herzog’s new documentary, Grizzly Man, takes a thoughtful look at the life and death of Timothy Treadwell, an amateur bear biologist who was killed and eaten by an Alaskan grizzly
Buffalo Calf Road Woman
In Buffalo Calf Road Woman, Rosemary and Joseph Agonito give a fictionalized account of the only woman warrior to fight at the Battle of the Little Bighorn
The Ardent Birder
The Ardent Birder, written by Todd Newberry and delightfully illustrated by Gene Holtan, salutes the "lovely madness" of bird-watching
Hear Him Roar
Andrew Wingfield’s tensely told novel, Hear Him Roar, describes what happens when Puma concolor, the mountain lion, collides with Homo dingus dongus, the suburban homeowner

Perspective

In Washington, the most outrageous sins are legal
Given the incestuous nature of politics and lobbying in Washington, D.C., and the corruption inherent in the gambling industry, the rise of an opportunist like Jack Abramoff was all but inevitable

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
Oscar Goodman sounds off; Tom Chapman vs. the Yankee Girl; LeRoy Becker loved Montana; Andrew Bisharat vs. baby boomers; cats vs. electricity; miners vs. bloomers in the Old West

Dear Friends

Dear friends
HCN Holiday Open House; People’s Choice Awards for HCN stories; thanks to Mark Lellouch and Alison Davis; visitors

News

The little wilderness that could
The long and carefully planned campaign to protect the Ojito Wilderness in New Mexico holds useful lessons for wilderness activists across the West
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
Trouble on the Valles Caldera
The Valles Caldera National Preserve in New Mexico was supposed to be a grand experiment in collaborative management, but the current board’s push to expand grazing and curtail public input has led to clashes with local environmentalists
Public-lands agenda turns more radical, urgent
Rep. Richard Pombo has inserted a provision in the House budget bill that will reform United States mining law to allow for the selling off of public lands
Congress loosens organic standards
Large-scale organic food producers have beaten back an attempt to strengthen national organic standards
Agriculture gets a half-step greener
Protected Harvest is a nonprofit that offers certification to farmers who are interested in more eco-friendly practices, but not willing to become organic

Letters

High Country News Classifieds
  • COMMUNICATIONS AND OUTREACH ASSOCIATE
    Communications and Outreach Associate Position Opening: www.westernlaw.org/communications-outreach-associate ************************************************* Location: Western U.S., ideally in one of WELC's existing office locations (Santa Fe or Taos, NM, Helena,...
  • FREELANCE GRAPHIC DESIGNER & PROJECT COORDINATOR (REMOTE)
    High Country News (HCN) is seeking a contract Graphic Designer & Project Coordinator to design promotional, marketing and fund-raising assets and campaigns, and project-manage them...
  • FILM AND DIGITAL MEDIA: ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF INDIGENOUS MEDIA, CULTURAL SOVEREIGNTY AND DECOLONIZATION (INITIAL REVIEW 12.1.21)
    Film and Digital Media: Assistant Professor of Indigenous Media, Cultural Sovereignty and Decolonization (Initial Review 12.1.21) Position overview Position title: Assistant Professor - tenure-track Salary...
  • REAL ESTATE SPECIALIST
    To learn more about this position and to apply please go to the following URL.
  • ENVIRONMENTAL GEOPHYSICS
    "More Data, Less Digging" Find groundwater and reduce excavation costs!
  • RARE CHIRICAHUA RIPARIAN LAND FOR SALE
    40 acres: 110 miles from Tucson: native trees, grasses: birder's heaven::dark sky/ borders state lease & National forest/5100 ft/13-16 per annum rain
  • CENTRAL PARK CULTURAL RESOURCE SPECIALIST
    Agency: Oregon Parks and Recreation Department Salary Range: $5,203 - $7,996 Position Title: Central Park Cultural Resource Specialist Do you have a background in Archaeology...
  • STAFF ATTORNEY
    Come live and work in one of the most beautiful places in the world! As our Staff Attorney you will play a key role in...
  • ARIZONA GRAZING CLEARINGHOUSE
    Dedicated to preventing the ecological degradation caused by livestock grazing on Arizona's public lands, and exposing the government subsidies that support it.
  • OPERATIONS MANAGER
    Position Summary: Friends of the Inyo (friendsoftheinyo.org) is seeking a new Operations Manager. The Operations Manager position is a full-time permanent position that reports directly...
  • WATER RIGHTS BUREAU CHIEF
    Water Rights Bureau Chief, State of Montana, DNRC, Water Resources Division, Helena, MT Working to support and implement the Department's mission to help ensure that...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Amargosa Conservancy (AC), a conservation nonprofit dedicated to standing up for water and biodiversity in the Death Valley region, seeks an executive director to...
  • DEVELOPMENT & OUTREACH ASSOCIATE
    Southeast Alaska Conservation Council is hiring! Who We Are: The Southeast Alaska Conservation Council (SEACC) is a small grassroots nonprofit based out of Juneau, Alaska,...
  • DESERT LANDS ORGANIZER
    Position Summary: Friends of the Inyo seeks a Desert Lands Organizer to assist with existing campaigns that will defend lands in the California desert, with...
  • IDAHO CONSERVATION LEAGUE
    Want to help preserve Idaho's land, water, and air for future generations? Idaho Conservation League currently has 3 open positions. We are looking for a...
  • LUNATEC ODOR-FREE DISHCLOTHS
    are a must try. They stay odor-free, dry fast, are durable and don't require machine washing. Try today.
  • EVENTS AND ANNUAL FUND COORDINATOR
    The Events and Annual Fund Coordinator is responsible for managing and coordinating the Henry's Fork Foundation's fundraising events for growing the membership base, renewing and...
  • EDUCATION DIRECTOR
    Position Description: The Education Director is the primary leader of Colorado Canyons Association's (CCA) education programs for students and adults on the land and rivers...
  • 10 ACRES OF NEW MEXICO HIGH DESERT
    10 Acres of undeveloped high desert land in central NM, about 45 minutes from downtown Albuquerque. Mixed cedar and piñon pine cover. Some dirt roadways...
  • WATERSHED RESTORATION DIRECTOR
    $58k-$70k + benefits to oversee watershed restoration projects that fulfill our strategic goals across urban and rural areas within the bi-national Santa Cruz and San...