Growth & Sustainability

The country’s cheapest water is in the West’s driest cities
The country’s cheapest water is in the West’s driest cities
By charging more for nonessential gallons, cities could keep water affordable for everyone.
Students explore nature in densely built Los Angeles
Students explore nature in densely built Los Angeles
Educators hope this elementary school will foster a commitment to science and conservation.
The U.S. has become a nation of suburbs
The U.S. has become a nation of suburbs
In the West and elsewhere, suburban areas are growing as cities decline.
Aspen may stockpile water under its golf course
Aspen may stockpile water under its golf course
As climate change looms, towns look to store water without dams.
Addressing climate grief makes you a badass, not a snowflake
Addressing climate grief makes you a badass, not a snowflake
Students studying the emotional toll of environmental loss faced a wave of vitriol.
Portland’s gentrification has its roots in racism
Portland’s gentrification has its roots in racism
Black Americans aren’t defined by poor schools, menial jobs, high crime and incarceration. They endure them.
The dark secrets of the Animas River
The dark secrets of the Animas River
A 2015 spill that turned the waterway orange is a reminder of mining’s disastrous legacy.
A bird’s song adds wonder to the world
A bird’s song adds wonder to the world
If a song defines a place, what does it mean to lose it?
Below Mount Shasta, a fight burbles over bottled water
Below Mount Shasta, a fight burbles over bottled water
Selling water to Nestlé, Crystal Geyser and others could strain aquifers.
Interior revives the push for a higher Shasta Dam
Interior revives the push for a higher Shasta Dam
But the state of California and Winnemem Wintu Tribe oppose the project.
Oil- and gas-rich counties ask for more federal revenue
Oil- and gas-rich counties ask for more federal revenue
A new bill would return money earmarked for Western water projects to mineral-producing counties.
Rent hikes, homelessness and hunger in a small Western city
Rent hikes, homelessness and hunger in a small Western city
A writer in Ashland, Oregon, sees the problems that follow an influx of wealth.
Conservation takes a hit in early version of farm bill
Conservation takes a hit in early version of farm bill
The bill that shapes the U.S. ag economy provides big money for land protections.
Why Compton said no to legal marijuana sales
Why Compton said no to legal marijuana sales
The California city tries to move on from a painful history scarred by illegal drugs.
Did Fort Collins grow too big too fast?
Did Fort Collins grow too big too fast?
The Colorado city’s unwieldy expansion offers a cautionary tale for similar Western locales.
Coastal cities battle industry over climate change
Coastal cities battle industry over climate change
Fossil fuel companies face mounting lawsuits for their contributions to the looming climate catastrophe.
Land trusts move from the country to the city
Land trusts move from the country to the city
To battle inequality and sprawl, conservation groups are looking beyond rural areas.
In Congress, both parties agree on one public lands bill
In Congress, both parties agree on one public lands bill
A bill allowing public land sales for conservation inches towards passage.
As Alaska’s waters warm, squid move Northward
As Alaska’s waters warm, squid move Northward
Opalescents are showing up in waters previously considered too cold for them.
A way out of Bozeman’s shadow
A way out of Bozeman’s shadow
Belgrade, Montana, is growing just enough to assert an identity separate of its adjacent city.
A corporate takeover of legal weed looms in California
A corporate takeover of legal weed looms in California
Thousands of small-scale marijuana growers could be replaced by Big Ag.
‘Zombie trailers’ stalk a budding tourist town
‘Zombie trailers’ stalk a budding tourist town
A uranium town gone bust wants to rebuild, but derelict properties stand in its way.
West Obsessed: An Indigenous family’s struggle for housing
West Obsessed: An Indigenous family’s struggle for housing
Writer Julian Brave NoiseCat discusses the experience of the Waukazoo family.
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