GOP lawmakers tout coal's benefits at U.S. House hearing
At U.S. House Natural Resources subcommittee hearing on Tuesday, Republican lawmakers and witnesses testified about the importance of coal to the nation's energy supply and economy, while Democratic lawmakers focused on the recent Interior Department inspector general’s investigation that questioned the prices at which federal coal leases were sold.
Billings Gazette (AP); July 10
Montana wind farm officially dedicated on Tuesday
Colorado-based CompassEnergies' $86-million Spion Kop wind farm in Montana was officially dedicated on Tuesday, with officials from CompassEnergies, NorthWestern Energy, turbine manufacturer General Electric, and Judith Basin County on hand.
Great Falls Tribune; July 10
As wildfires become more intense, policy changes urged
Buildup of fuels in the nation's forests, as well as the increase of homes being built in the wildland-urban interface have all contributed to more intense wildfires that are increasingly expensive to fight, and in the aftermath of the tragic Arizona wildfire where 19 wildland firefighters died, experts are calling for an overhaul of forest-management and planning policies.
Christian Science Monitor; July 10
Hearings on coal port permits in Oregon last 12 hours
Supporters of Ambre Energy's plan to export coal from the Powder River Basin in Montana and Wyoming overseas spoke about the economic benefit the port in Washington state would bring, while opponents expressed concerns about the health effects of coal trains and continued burning of coal on the world's atmosphere.
Portland Oregonian; July 10
Derailment, blast in Canada raise concerns about shipping oil by rail
The Association of American Railroads reports that spills from rail lines occur 2.7 more often than from pipelines, although pipelines generally leak more oil than rail cars.
Seattle Times; July 10
Criminal investigation opened in Quebec train derailment
The death toll from the explosion and fire after a train of tanker cars carrying crude oil derailed in a small Quebec town is now 15, and authorities have confirmed that a criminal investigation into the incident has now been opened.
KTVUNews.com; July 10
NWS maps burn areas of Wyoming prone to flash foods
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration warned that this is the time of year where heavy rains are likely to fall in Wyoming, and the National Weather Service has developed maps of burn areas in the state where flash floods and erosion would likely occur should those rains fall.
Casper Star-Tribune; July 10
Idaho to allow company to test Russian firefighting jet
California-based International Emergency Services obtained permission from Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter to test a Russian twin jet Beriev Be-200, a Russian firefighting jet, in the state.
Idaho Statesman (AP); July 10
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.