Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Rockies Today, Nov. 5

Posted By on Tue, Nov 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

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Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

Montana judge sides with Wyoming company on coal tax computation
On Monday, District Judge Jeffrey Sherlock ordered Montana to recompute the taxes due from Wyoming-based Cloud Peak Energy and said that the tax should be based on the price of the coal at the time the contract for it was signed, not when it was shipped.
Flathead Beacon (AP); Nov. 5

Report says grizzly bear deaths in Yellowstone area down by half
The Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team said that 24 grizzly bears have died in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem so far this year, less than half the 56 that died in the area in 2012.
Casper Star-Tribune; Nov. 5

Lawsuit against BNSF claims spray to contain coal dust not working
A lawsuit filed last summer by a coalition of environmental groups, including the Sierra Club, claims the spray used on railcars full of coal does not keep coal dust from flying from the railcars, but BNSF officials said the surfactant reduces coal dust escape by 85 percent and that the litigation is just another attack on coal.
Great Falls Tribune; Nov. 3

USFWS report details economic benefit of wildlife refuges
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell will release a report from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that found, in 2011, the nation's 561 wildlife refuges drew 46.5 million visitors and generated $2.4-billion in economic activity.
Missoulian (AP); Nov. 5

Federal judge invalidates portion of BLM travel plan in Utah
Wilderness and historic preservation groups lauded the decision handed down Monday by U.S. District Judge Dale Kimball that invalidated a portion of the Bureau of Land Management's Richland plan, which covers 2.1 million acres in Utah's Sevier, Garfield, Wayne and Piute counties, because the BLM failed to minimize the effect motorized travel would have on the area and that the agency did not adequately inventory archaeological sites as required by federal law.
Salt Lake Tribune; Nov. 5

Canadian minister tells U.S. meatpackers labeling law has to go
At the North American Meat Association Conference in Chicago, Canadian Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz told an audience of U.S. meatpackers that Canada is done being polite about its opposition to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Country of Origin Labeling law, and said Canada is poised to respond to the law with retaliatory tariffs.
Calgary Herald; Nov. 5

Encana Corp. to cut 20% of staff, close Texas office
Doug Suttles, the new CEO of Alberta-based Encana Corp., announced additional layoffs on Monday, with the plan cutting one in five jobs, spinning off its mineral rights and charges royalties on 4.9 million acres of land in southern Alberta into a separate company, and closing its office in Plano, Tex., but Encana will retain its holdings in northwest Alberta and northeast B.C.; the Alberta Duvernay, Colorado's DJ Basin, the San Juan Basin of northern New Mexico; and the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale of Mississippi.
Calgary Herald; Nov. 5

Alberta premier cancels meeting with B.C. Premier Clark
Monday's meeting between senior officials of Alberta and British Columbia that found many differences of opinion about the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline needed to move Alberta crude to ports on B.C.'s coast to export markets overseas led to Alberta Premier Alison Redford's decision to cancel her meeting today with B.C. Premier Christy Clark on the pipeline project.
Calgary Herald; Nov. 5

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.

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