Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Rockies Today, March 26

Posted By on Tue, Mar 26, 2013 at 11:01 AM

Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.


Utah judge makes initial ruling on stream access law
On Monday, the Utah State District Judge Derek Pullan rejected most of the state's defense of the 2010 law that restricts public access to rivers where they cross private lands, although the judge stopped short of overturning the law and said he needed to hear more evidence about the law.
Salt Lake Tribune; March 26

Legislation tweaking Colorado water law heads to the state House
Despite massive changes to her Senate Bill 13-19, Colorado state Sen. Gail Schwartz said the bill that would not penalize agricultural users of water for curtailing use during drought, is an important first step in changing the state's water laws to address dwindling supplies.
Aspen Times; March 26

Wyoming judge rules hydraulic fracturing chemicals are trade secrets
In a decision rendered Monday, Wyoming State District Judge Catherine Wilking sided with the state and the oil and gas industry and said chemicals used during the hydraulic fracturing drilling process are a trade secret, and do not have to be disclosed.
Casper Star-Tribune; March 26

Idaho federal lawmakers support state's management of federal lands
The Idaho Senate will take up a resolution this week that demands the federal government transfer its lands within Idaho's borders to the state, but U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo and U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador said allowing states to manage federal lands would likely be a more realistic scenario.
Idaho Statesman; March 26

Lawsuits against Colorado for North Fork Fire grow
The state of Colorado quickly admitted responsibility for the Lower North Fork Fire that began as a controlled burn in 2012, and set up a fund to pay claims, but residents who lost their homes and family members to the blaze have filed separate lawsuits alleging that previous escaped controlled burns in the area should have indicated such efforts required additional monitoring.
Denver Post; March 26

Trust for Public Lands announces retirement of Wyoming energy leases
The Trust for Public Lands announced Monday that it had closed on a deal to permanently retire energy leases on 47,000 acres of land in the Bridger-Teton National Forest in Wyoming, and is working on agreements to protect another 11,000 acres in the Upper Hoback Basin.
Casper Star-Tribune; March 26

Coalition release report on health effects of coal-fired power in Alberta
Alberta burns more coal to generate power than all the other provinces in Canada combined, and on Monday, a coalition of health and environmental groups released a report that coal-fired power production costs $300 million annually in medical costs and causes 100 premature deaths.
Edmonton Journal; March 26

Suncor unsure if oilsands processing water reached Alberta river
A frozen pipe that carried water from bitumen processing at Suncor's Fort McMurray operations resulted in the release of contaminated water that may have reached the Athabasca River, and Suncor and Alberta Environment said that water is no longer flowing from the pipe and testing is ongoing to determine the extent of contamination.
Edmonton Journal; March 26

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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