Magazine
A Mega-Dairy Comes to the Desert
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August 1, 2021

Water, climate, habitat and humanity mingle in our August issue. The feature examines a Minnesota-based mega-dairy’s impacts on rural southeast Arizona, a region already suffering from a shrinking aquifer. In Washington, dams may doom the Skagit River’s imperiled salmon, unless a local tribe convinces regulators to remove them. In Montana, the Apsáalooke (Crow) Nation wants to restore the polluted Little Bighorn River, while in Alaska’s Yukon Flats, tribes worry about water and wildlife when a company with a history of environmental violations begins exploring for oil. Humans need habitat, too, and Tucson, Arizona, hopes to ease the housing crisis by building accessory dwelling units. This month’s Facts and Figures untangles the relationship between heat, drought and the power grid. We preview a breakthrough Indigenous TV series, “Reservation Dogs,” and review Alexandra Kleeman’s neo-noir climate thriller, “Something New Under the Sun.” Finally, we include Tope Folarin’s thoughtful essay about how his childhood memories encouraged his family’s tentative return to the outside world, post-COVID-19.

Feature

A mega-dairy is transforming Arizona’s aquifer and farming lifestyles
A mega-dairy is transforming Arizona’s aquifer and farming lifestyles
Minnesota’s Riverview Dairy has deep pockets and long straws.

Reportage

A quest for Alaska oil sparks a fight over tribal sovereignty
A quest for Alaska oil sparks a fight over tribal sovereignty
An energy company with a history of environmental violations is conducting exploratory drilling in the Yukon Flats.
Interior looks into the legacy of Native boarding schools
Interior looks into the legacy of Native boarding schools
The Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative aims to shed light on the grim history of residential Indian boarding schools in the U.S.
Can Puget Sound’s orca and salmon survive Seattle’s dams?
Can Puget Sound’s orca and salmon survive Seattle’s dams?
Federal regulators are reassessing the ecological impacts of the Skagit River dams.
The Upper Skagit Indian Tribe calls on Seattle to remove the Gorge Dam
The Upper Skagit Indian Tribe calls on Seattle to remove the Gorge Dam
The tribe is pushing to protect their way of life.
Reviving traditional Apsáalooke water sources
Reviving traditional Apsáalooke water sources
Tribal scientists and community members are testing wells, solving plumbing problems and delivering clean water to their neighbors.

Editor's Note

Extreme heat is here to stay
Extreme heat is here to stay
How will we respond?

What Works

Could casitas help prevent displacement in the West’s cities?
Could casitas help prevent displacement in the West’s cities?
As the housing crisis worsens, advocates sound off on how to bring homes to the people.

Facts & Figures

Climate change wreaks havoc on the electricity grid
Climate change wreaks havoc on the electricity grid
Heat and drought combined are especially harmful to the power system.

Essays

Is there really freedom in the outdoors?
Is there really freedom in the outdoors?
After a year indoors, a writer remembers the joy — and pressures — of a childhood spent in Utah.

Review

The new Indigenous TV series coming your way
The new Indigenous TV series coming your way
‘Reservation Dogs’ is the latest product of an exciting new era of Native self-representation.
Climate change is the ultimate neo-noir subject
Climate change is the ultimate neo-noir subject
The novel ‘Something New Under the Sun’ treats a smoke-filled Los Angeles as its own genre.

Heard Around the West

Expletive hot; lemur spotting; teacher cams
Expletive hot; lemur spotting; teacher cams
Mishaps and mayhem from around the region.

Dear Friends

Our never boring board
Our never boring board
Departures and additions to our honor-worthy volunteers.

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