Natural Resources & Energy

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Makenna Greenwald

Back in 2017, the first USDA-inspected full-service meat processing plant in the state of Wyoming in over 40 years opened up shop in Cody. Now, Laramie is set to open its first-ever meat processing plant as soon as March. 

About one-third of Americans live in areas that regularly have unhealthy levels of air pollution, according to a new analysis out this week from Environment America, an organization of state-based environmental advocacy groups throughout the country.

The Trump administration has spent the past month announcing sweeping changes that could benefit ranchers on public lands, including a proposal to overhaul grazing regulations for the first time in 25 years. 

Sheridan County Chamber of Commerce

The Sheridan County Chamber of Commerce is hosting its first meeting in a series of public talks about open spaces in the county on Tuesday, Jan. 28.

What has sharp teeth, big, recurved claws, and is almost as long as a school bus?

Rural economies could get a massive boost under policies meant to decrease carbon emissions, according to an analysis by the Center for American Progress, a progressive think tank.

 


A new and sweeping partnership is looking at preventing and preparing for worsening wildfires in the West. 

The Colorado-based Rocky Mountain Restoration Initiative is a collaboration of 30 partners including utility companies, wildlife nonprofits, hunting groups, the Forest Service, and water management agencies with a mission to “increase the resilience of forests and communities.”

Pilot Hill Land Purchase

The Pilot Hill Project recently received a $10,000 donation, which puts them over $1 million raised so far. Their goal is $1.5 million. 

For years during the Cold War, large swaths of land in Nevada were used for atomic weapons testing. Nuclear bombs were dropped just miles from small towns and the people living in them.

Over time, men, women and children started getting sick, and three decades ago, a federal law offered a formal apology and eventually created a program to both reach out to affected communities and pay partial restitution when appropriate. That program is ending soon, but the nuclear tests’ health effects are not.

The number of avalanche fatalities in the U.S. has remained fairly steady over the years, despite more people visiting the backcountry. But one thing that’s changed, according to a recent study, is the median age of victims has gone up.

 


Wyoming State Geological Survey

The Wyoming State Geological Survey (WSGS) has released its annual energy summary reports. They focus on the state of coal, oil, and natural gas.

Economic Development Adminstration

The U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a hearing to discuss the oversight of the Economic Development Administration (EDA). One part of the hearing touched on the EDA's commitment to coal communities looking to strengthen their economies.

Blackjewel's Eagle Butte mine shipments in 2017
U.S. Energy Information Administration

Judge Frank W. Volk of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of West Virginia delayed a decision over records access into the former President and CEO of Blackjewel LLC Jeff Hoops and affiliated parties.

On January 9, the bankrupt coal company requested access to a wide variety of material pertaining to Hoops, his family and related entities to be used as evidence. Those materials include pre-bankruptcy cash and property transfers

Public Domain

Several conservation groups filed an intent to sue over a move that could result in up to 72 grizzly bears being killed in the next ten years.

A fight is brewing in eastern Utah over whether the National Park Service should include nearly 200 rock art sites in the National Register of Historic Places.

In March of last year, a group of volunteers and preservationists submitted a proposal to add 199 rock art sites to the Register, an effort that took a decade to complete.

NPS Photo / Stacey Skirvanek

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service faces a pending lawsuit from conservation groups who argue the agency has taken too long to protect wolverines under the Endangered Species Act.

On a frigid Tuesday evening, Brent Yatkeman is scrambling to save an avalanche victim buried in the snow somewhere on a ski hill near Park City, Utah. 

The proposed site is the former Alcoa/Reynolds aluminum plant adjacent to the Columbia River in Longview, downstream from the current Weyerhaeuser lumber mill.
Millennium Bulk Terminals - Longview

Wyoming and Montana are looking to the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene over Washington's decision on the Millennium Bulk Terminal. The states announced today they have filed a joint motion to challenge what they call "Washington State's unconstitutional discrimination against a proposed coal export terminal."

"Right now, we believe this is our sole remedy," said Wyoming's Attorney General Bridget Hill.

Cooper McKim

South of Laramie, there's a road that goes straight into the plains. Over the hill, it's just open country, boulders and eventually, a tan house with a large porch facing the Rockies.

Wyoming Bureau of Land Management attribution 2.0 generic (CC by 2.0)

Jim Robinson, principal economist for the Wyoming Economic Analysis Division, said when he looks at Wyoming's economy in the coming year, it's not going to bring news that anyone wants to hear. 

Diane Renkin / NPS

The Wyoming Game and Fish Commission is calling on the National Park Service to cancel its plans to use aerial gunning to remove invasive mountain goats from Grand Teton National Park.

On Wednesday, the commission passed a resolution condemning the plan, writing, "Having government personnel kill mountain goats from helicopters and leaving them to rot and be wasted is unacceptable."

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

Outlier weather events are growing more common globally, and Jackson Hole Mountain Resort in the Bridger-Teton National Forest is no exception.

By USFWS Mountain-Prairie (Mule Deer on Winter Range in SW Wyoming) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0) or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Reducing speed limits might sound like a cheap, easy way to keep both human and wildlife safe on Wyoming roads.

It was a dry start to the year for some mountain ranges in the region, but recent storms brought most Mountain West snowpack levels back to normal.

 


The United States could see tens of thousands more violent crimes per year as climate change causes warmer winters, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Kamila Kudelska

On Friday, Jan. 17, 40 horses from the Fifteenmile Herd Management Area will be up for adoption in the state's first wild horse adoption of the year in Rock Springs.

The Interior Department has been trying to tackle a growing backlog of public records requests under the Trump administration, and now the agency is creating a new legal team to help with the effort. 

Update, Jan. 15 10:11 a.m.: The Department of Interior has provided a statement, which is now included in this story.

The Trump Administration’s Interior Department has largely ignored public comment on proposed rule changes, according to an analysis from the Center for Western Priorities.

The conservation advocacy group looked at ten proposals from Interior, including the easing of offshore drilling regulations and Endangered Species Act protections. What it found was that while more than 95% of public comments were opposed to the changes, the agency still moved forward on most of them.

Recent data shows that the U.S. had more minable oil and natural gas reserves than ever before.

Energy Capital Economic Development

Energy Capital Economic Development has announced Curtis Burdette as its new vice president of operations.

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