Economy

Illegal marijuana grows are stealing from California’s scarce water
Illegal marijuana grows are stealing from California’s scarce water
As drought grips the Golden State, water thefts have increased to record levels. The most common offender: illegal pot farms.
The threat of wildfire in the West arrives alongside tourists
The threat of wildfire in the West arrives alongside tourists
In Mammoth Lakes, California, residents are still anxious from the 2020 fire season.
Can the sun solve New Mexico’s energy conundrum?
Can the sun solve New Mexico’s energy conundrum?
The state is dependent on oil and gas, but Carlsbad has opportunity to become the epicenter of renewable energy.
New Mexico’s economic and energy extraction quagmire
New Mexico’s economic and energy extraction quagmire
‘We’re on a death train, economically.’
Climate change research threatened by University of Alaska budget cuts
Climate change research threatened by University of Alaska budget cuts
Gov. Mike Dunleavy slashed university funding by $130 million, alarming Alaskans, scientists and climate specialists.
With coal in free fall, Wyoming faces an uncertain future
With coal in free fall, Wyoming faces an uncertain future
As demand shrinks and the industry retracts, counties and the state are in an untenable situation.
The tyranny of lawns and landlords
The tyranny of lawns and landlords
Renting culture puts dreams of cultivating wildness out of reach.
Much of rural America is doomed to decline
Much of rural America is doomed to decline
Public policy solutions need to grapple with, not ignore, this economic reality.
New Wyoming coal company abandons mines and miners
New Wyoming coal company abandons mines and miners
State officials are picking up the pieces after Blackjewel goes belly up.
Nevada teens find community as they navigate homelessness and adulthood together
Nevada teens find community as they navigate homelessness and adulthood together
Clark County has one of the largest unaccompanied homeless youth populations in the nation.
Rural anxieties derailed Oregon’s climate plans
Rural anxieties derailed Oregon’s climate plans
Arguments over state environmental policy impacts ignore broader challenges to rural communities.
Bees, trees and a sense of unease
Bees, trees and a sense of unease
Will mutual dependence mean shared destruction for California’s almonds and bees?
Close encounters with the bear kind
Close encounters with the bear kind
The very places that attract visitors and newcomers for their proximity to wildlife grapple with a spike in bear-human incidents.
The West’s worst fires aren’t burning in forests
The West’s worst fires aren’t burning in forests
Range fires get bigger every year, threatening sagebrush habitat and rural towns.
Farmers turn to prisons to fill labor needs
Farmers turn to prisons to fill labor needs
With immigration numbers low, the agriculture industry looks to another form of disenfranchised workers.
Ranchers sue major meatpackers
Ranchers sue major meatpackers
Plaintiffs allege ‘The Big Four’ conspired to reduce cattle prices.
‘None of this happened the way you think it did’
‘None of this happened the way you think it did’
For years, the clients of a Colorado funeral home kept their loved ones’ cremated remains. Then the FBI called.
What it’s like to navigate life below the poverty line
What it’s like to navigate life below the poverty line
A new book humanizes the work America’s poor must go through to try and stay afloat.
See where PFAS pollution has been confirmed in the American West
See where PFAS pollution has been confirmed in the American West
Western states lag behind in both monitoring and regulating the class of ‘forever chemicals.’
Where water is life, many on the Pine Ridge Reservation go thirsty
Where water is life, many on the Pine Ridge Reservation go thirsty
A pipeline’s promise is fulfilled for white ranchers while tribal communities are left waiting.
A wild winter threatens summer profits in Colorado’s high country
A wild winter threatens summer profits in Colorado’s high country
The potential for a cascade of water may slow the flow of tourists to Lake City.
Fires are indiscriminate. Recovery isn’t.
Fires are indiscriminate. Recovery isn’t.
The disparate timeframes of rebuilding in California’s wine country and its poorest county, shown by data.
How recreation boosts the economy
How recreation boosts the economy
From travelers to new residents, outdoor enthusiasts make an impact on the West’s bottom lines.
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