Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Rockies Today, April 24

Posted By on Wed, Apr 24, 2013 at 10:55 AM

Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.


Montana senator says Rocky Mountain Front bill will be a priority
After announcing that he would not seek re-election next year, Montana U.S. Sen. Max Baucus said his decision will free him from having to campaign and allow him to pursue the passage of the Rocky Mountain Front Heritage Act, as well as legislation to protect the U.S. side of the North Fork watershed.
Great Falls Tribune; April 24

USGS study finds sage grouse like undisturbed areas, quiet
A new study led by U.S. Geological Survey biologist Steve Knick confirmed that sage grouse need undisturbed habitat and solitude for successful reproduction, with 99 percent of the active 3,000 leks studied in 355,000 square miles of historic sage grouse range in the West found in areas where no more than 3 percent of the land was disturbed by human activity.
Idaho Statesman; April 24

BLM puts wild horse gathers on hold as it examines population control options
The Bureau of Land Management will conduct no wild horse gathers for the remainder of this year as the agency examines the feasibility of spaying mares to help rein in reproduction.
Denver Post; April 24

Federal court ruling allows separate lawsuits on wolves in Wyoming to proceed
A ruling issued this month by U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington, D.C. that denied the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's request that the D.C. lawsuit be transferred to Cheyenne, where another lawsuit challenging the federal government's transfer of wolf management to Wyoming, will allow the two parallel lawsuits to continue separately.
Denver Post (AP); April 24

Low chinook run forces Idaho Fish, Game to cancel meeting to set limits
The number of Chinook salmon headed to Idaho from the Pacific Ocean reported at the Bonneville Dam is so low this spring that the Idaho Fish and Game Commission canceled its Monday meeting to set the state's rules on salmon fishing.
Idaho Statesman (Lewiston Tribune); April 24

Harvard study finds database on hydraulic fracturing lacking
Colorado and 10 other states require oil and gas operators to post chemicals used in the hydraulic fracturing drilling method on FracFocus, but a Harvard Law School analysis of that website found that it is not searchable as required by Colorado law, and that chemicals listed by Texas companies in the database don't exist.
Denver Post; April 24

American Lung Association gives 3 Montana counties 'F's' for air quality
Butte-Silver Bow County officials said wildfires and winter inversions were to blame for the Montana county's failing grade on air quality from the American Lung Association, which also gave an F to Ravalli and Lewis and Clark counties. Missoula County got a D.
Montana Standard; April 24

American Lung Association gives 2 Utah counties 'F's' for high ozone levels
Both Uintah and Salt Lake counties in Utah received a failing grade from the American Lung Association for high ozone levels.
Salt Lake Tribune; April 24

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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