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Saving the Platte February 01, 1999

Saving the Platte

Environmentalists, farmers and state and federal agencies try to find some kind of consensus even as each reaches for a share of the overused Platte River as it flows from Colorado, through Wyoming and across Nebraska.

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Desert sprawl January 18, 1999

Desert sprawl

In Tucson, Ariz., where a dozen acres are cleared for development each day, environmentalists and concerned locals try to find ways to rein in runaway growth, and to save the desert and its remaining endangered cactus ferruginous pygmy owls.

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Grand Canyon Gridlock December 21, 1998

Grand Canyon Gridlock

So many people want to take a river trip through the Grand Canyon that limits set by the Park Service - which many say favor commercial outfitters over private boaters - create an administrative nightmare for the agency.

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Vail and the road to a recreational empire December 07, 1998

Vail and the road to a recreational empire

Some worry that Vail and the other booming ski resorts along Colorado's I-70 corridor - which are more lucrative than ever as they become year-round resorts - are turning the state into an Alpine theme park more like Switzerland than the Rocky Mountains.

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A patchwork peace unravels November 23, 1998

A patchwork peace unravels

The uncertain truce set up by Pres. Clinton's 1993 Northwest Forest Plan is threatened by dissatisfaction as environmentalists, loggers and scientists still fight over remaining old growth and cannot agree how best to manage the forests.

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Grizzly war November 09, 1998

Grizzly war

Wildlife biologists, environmentalists and Western politicians are engaged in a fierce debate over whether two decades of protection have so restored Yellowstone's grizzly population that the animal ought to be removed from the endangered species list.

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The Oregon way October 26, 1998

The Oregon way

Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, D, is determined to solve difficult problems - such as the recovery of his state's wild coastal coho salmon - at the state level, through consensus.

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A river becomes a raw nerve October 12, 1998

A river becomes a raw nerve

The grassroots environmental group Amigos Bravos seeks consensus in the mostly Hispanic communities along the Rio Costilla in southern Colorado and northern New Mexico, where there is never enough water to go around.

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A senator for the New West in the race of his life September 28, 1998

A senator for the New West in the race of his life

Democrat Harry Reid brings a reputation for integrity, a record of environmentalism, and the toughness he kept from his hardscrabble Western upbringing into a challenging race for a third term as a U.S. Senator from Nevada.

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We are shaped by the sound of wind, the slant of sunlight September 14, 1998

We are shaped by the sound of wind, the slant of sunlight

In the leading article of this essay issue, a writer says that nature writing is about much more than nature - it is about community, morality, character and hope as well.

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Excavating Ecotopia August 31, 1998

Excavating Ecotopia

Washington's Okanogan County is divided between those who support Battle Mountain Gold's planned Buckhorn Mtn. mine for its economic promise, and local and Native American activists fighting what they see as impending ecological disaster.

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Living out the trailer dream August 17, 1998

Living out the trailer dream

One in six Westerners now lives in a trailer, but this traditionally affordable housing can become an expensive trap, as tougher zoning pushes trailers into crowded parks with ever-increasing rents and regulations.

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Tribes reclaim stolen lands August 03, 1998

Tribes reclaim stolen lands

Using legal and financial savvy and the latest computer technology, Indian tribes across the West are taking control of tribal lands that have been in the hands of the federal government and, often, non-Indian farmers for the last century.

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Riding the Wyoming 'brand' July 06, 1998

Riding the Wyoming 'brand'

Wyoming's brand of insider politics is keeping the state in thrall to extractive industries and out of step with the rest of the West.

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Western water: Why it's dirty and in short supply June 22, 1998

Western water: Why it's dirty and in short supply

The new report, "Water in the West: The Challenge for the Next Century," is a remarkably far-sighted federal study that should serve as both a mission statement and a wake-up call about water management in the arid West.

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Don't fence me in June 08, 1998

Don't fence me in

Bison have made a remarkable recovery from near extinction a century ago, but now the animal's growing popularity as livestock raises questions about whether it can remain a "wild" animal.

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Tackling tamarisk May 25, 1998

Tackling tamarisk

The exotic woody shrub known as tamarisk or saltcedar has infested the West's river systems, but scientists are divided over how to fight it, or whether it is even possible to do so in a degraded landscape.

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The working West: grassroots groups and their newsletters May 11, 1998

The working West: grassroots groups and their newsletters

The many newsletters put out by small environmental grassroots groups reveal a West that is complex, quirky and deeply committed.

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The old West is going under April 27, 1998

The old West is going under

An HCN special issue says that the old extractive West is on its deathbed.

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Oil clashes with elk in the Book Cliffs April 13, 1998

Oil clashes with elk in the Book Cliffs

Utah's remote and little known Book Cliffs area seemed ripe for preservation under an innovative, locally grown initiative - until oilman Oscar Wyatt stepped in to challenge it.

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A bare-knuckled trio goes after the Forest Service March 30, 1998

A bare-knuckled trio goes after the Forest Service

The founders of the Southwest Center for Biological Diversity - Robin Silver, Kieran Suckling and Peter Galvin - are uncompromising and obsessive in their goal of preserving endangered species.

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Olympic onslaught: Salt Lake City braces for the winter games March 16, 1998

Olympic onslaught: Salt Lake City braces for the winter games

An introduction to the issue points out that Salt Lake City's intense and seemingly uncontrolled growth actually stems from deliberately planning - both to develop the city and to prepare for the Olympics.

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Wild horses: Do they belong in the West? March 02, 1998

Wild horses: Do they belong in the West?

The management of wild horses on Montana's Pryor Mountain's Wild Horse Range is caught between the love Americans have for the animal and the concern some environmentalists have for the impact it has on the land.

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Private rights vs. public lands February 16, 1998

Private rights vs. public lands

A ranching family's desire to develop a road to an inholding in Arizona's Arrastra Mounain Wilderness is a microcosm of the huge and unwieldy problem of inholdings on public lands throughout the West.

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Looking at dams in a new way February 02, 1998

Looking at dams in a new way

An unusual new book put out by the U.S. Geological Survey, "Dams and Rivers: A Primer on the Downstream Effects of Dams," is reviewed by Tom Knudson.

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