Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Rockies Today, Aug. 25

Posted By on Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 10:20 AM

Top news links, courtesy of Headwaters News.

Sources: State Department to find Keystone XL impact 'limited'
Sources briefed on the U.S. State Department's review of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, which will carry crude from Alberta's oilsands operations south to refineries in the United States, could be released as early as Friday, and said that the review found the pipeline's impact would be "limited," clearing a major hurdle in the process.
Washington Post; Aug. 25

Alberta auction of non-oilsands drilling rights breaks record
Alberta Energy reported Wednesday that the latest sale of non-oilsands drilling rights raised $463 million, putting the total for the year at $2.68 billion, a new record.
Edmonton Journal; Aug. 25

Wyoming agrees to keep 146 hydraulic-fracturing chemicals secret
Wyoming's regulations on hydraulic fracturing, a drilling method that uses a combination of water, sand and chemicals introduced underground at high pressure to break open rock formations holding oil and gas captive, have been in place a year, and during that time the state agreed with 11 companies to shield a total of 146 chemicals from public release under trade secret exemptions.
Casper Star-Tribune; Aug. 25

Montana landowners take issue with mission of transmission line project
NorthWestern Energy's proposed Mountain States Transmission Intertie would ship wind-generated power from Townsend in Montana south to Midpoint, Idaho, traveling over lands owned by counties, federal agencies, private landowners and companies, and while some ranchers already have a transmission line crossing their lands, they said putting a high-voltage line on their ranches just to provide a market for Northwestern Energy doesn't sit well with them. Second in series.
New York Times (Greenwire); Aug. 25

BLM director presses for hard-rock mining royalties
During a stop in Elko, Nev., on Tuesday, Bob Abbey, the director of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, discussed his agency's proposal to make hardrock mine operators pay royalties for the use of public lands, although Congress has yet to show any interest in the proposal.
Elko Daily Free Press; Aug. 25

Colorado Springs, oil company in court over annexed land
In what could be the first of its kind case, Houston-based Ultra Petroleum Corp. and Colorado Springs are fighting in U.S. Bankruptcy Court over the 21,500-acre bankrupt Banning Lewis Ranch on the Colorado city's east side, where the oil company is asking the court to set aside the city's annexation of the failed subdivision so it may more easily drill for oil.
Denver Post; Aug. 25

Colorado congressmen hold field hearing in Grand Junction on oilshale
U.S. Reps. Scott Tipton and Doug Lamborn, Colorado Republicans who serve on the House Natural Resources subcommittee on energy and mineral resources, held a field hearing entitled "American Jobs and Energy Security: Domestic Oil Shale, the Status of Research, Regulation and Roadblocks," in Grand Junction on Wednesday, where they heard from nine witnesses, most of whom addressed obstacles to the development of oilshale resources in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming.
Grand Junction Sentinel; Aug. 25

Montana to use $4M share of federal conservation funds to buy Troy parcel
U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced $53 million in grants would be paid out by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for conservation projects in 17 states, including $4 million to Montana, which will use the money to put a conservation easement on 9,300 acres owned by Stimson Lumber Co. near Troy.
Missoulian; Aug. 25

Headwaters News is a project of the Center for the Rocky Mountain West at The University of Montana. It provides a daily snapshot of news and opinion in the Rocky Mountain region of North America, giving the changing mountain West a tool to understand itself and a platform for the exchange of ideas.

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