NPS biologists recommend removal of 450 bison from Yellowstone Park
There are an estimated 4,200 bison in Yellowstone National Park and National Park Service biologists are recommending that 450 of those animals, primarily females, be removed to keep the herd at sustainable levels.
Billings Gazette; Dec. 28
High school graduates find high-paying jobs in Montana's oilfields
The oilfields of eastern Montana are luring high school graduates away from college and directly into the workforce, causing a drop in enrollment in community colleges there, as teens put off higher education for higher pay.
New York Times; Dec. 25
Colorado senator praises extension of wind-tax credit
Among the provisions of the deal struck between President Obama and Congress is a measure that extends the federal wind-tax incentive for one year, a provision that earned the praise of not only Colorado U.S. Sen. Mark Udall, but also officials of Vestas, the wind-energy company that provides hundreds of jobs at four facilities in Colorado.
Denver Post; Jan. 2
Federal government comes up with the cash for land buy in Wyoming park
The deal to complete the purchase of nearly two-square-mile parcel of private land within the boundaries of Grand Teton National Park is done, with the federal government coming up with the cash to complete the second phase of a 2010 deal that involved four separate parcels of land.
Jackson Hole Daily; Dec. 29
Oil company, BLM team up to provide water for wild horses in Wyoming
After the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality ordered Marathon Oil Co. to reduce the amount of water released from drilling operations into Dry Creek, which provided water for the McCullough Peaks wild horse herd, the oil company approached the Bureau of Land Management with a proposal to drill wells to keep water troughs full for the horses.
Casper Star-Tribune (Billings Gazette); Jan. 2
Alberta mulls funding study on rail line to carry bitumen to Alaska
This month, Alberta officials will consider paying $10 million of a $40-million study on the feasibility of building a nearly 1,500-mile rail line to carry oil from Fort McMurray to Delta Junction, Alaska, where it would then enter the Trans-Alaska Pipeline system to the Valdez Marine Terminal, and ultimately be shipped to Asian markets.
Edmonton Journal; Jan. 1
Colorado Oil and Gas Commission proposes 500-foot drilling setback
On Monday, the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission approved a draft regulation that would create a statewide setback from homes and drill sites to 500 feet, and require mitigation for wells drilled within 1,000 feet of homes.
Denver Post; Jan. 1
Idaho Power proposes changes for solar-power users
Idaho Power is asking the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to allow it to make changes in how the utility handles net-metering with homeowners and businesses that have solar-power installations, including raising the price solar-power users pay for power from the utility and quadruple the fees they would pay to hook up to the grid.
Idaho Statesman; Dec. 30
Mountain West 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.