Thursday, January 16, 2014

Rockies Today, Jan. 16

Posted By on Thu, Jan 16, 2014 at 11:44 AM

Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

Most at Idaho meeting protest killing wolves in wilderness
At the Idaho Fish and Game Commission's meeting Wednesday in Boise, the crowd was asked to raise their hands if they opposed the state's hiring of a hunter to remove two wolf packs in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness and a majority did so, and the state wildlife commission reported at that meeting that nine wolves had been killed by that hunter so far.
Idaho Statesman; Jan. 16

Air Force finds 34 officers at Montana base cheated on tests
On Wednesday, Air Force officials said 34 officers at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana had been decertified from their nuclear mission after an investigation on illegal drug possession at six bases found evidence that the officers had either shared information on monthly proficiency tests or knew that such information was being shared and did not report it to superiors.
Great Falls Tribune; Jan. 16

Canada board opens comment period on Alberta-B.C. pipeline project
After a flood of public comments on Enbridge's proposed $6.5-billion Northern Gateway project slowed down the process, Canada's National Energy Board implemented a new process that requires anyone wishing to participate in public hearings or to write a letter must apply to the NEB by filling out a form online, and the new process will be tested as the federal review of the $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline, which will triple the capacity of KinderMorgan's pipeline from Alberta to B.C.'s coast.
Vancouver Sun; Jan. 16

Board declines to fund research on Alberta peatlands, oilsands work
The two scientists who have been working the past four years to document how oilsands operations in Alberta is affecting the peatlands in the Canadian province learned that the new federal-provincial Joint Oilsands Monitoring (JOSM) agency did not include wetlands and groundwater monitoring in its monitoring plans, despite the fact that peatlands cover 40 percent of the area in northeastern Alberta, and that over the past years tests have shown that oilsands activity is affecting those peatlands.
Edmonton Journal; Jan. 16

Alberta oil execs fire back at celebrity critics
Cenovus Energy Inc. chief executive Brian Ferguson and TransCanada Corp. chair Russ Girling had much to say about Neil Young's press conference launching the singer's cross-country "Honour the Treaties" tour, where he criticized the oilsands industry during their presentation at Toronto's Canadian Club, where they spoke about the inaccuracy of Hollywood stereotypes and how Canada's environmental record was being maligned in the press.
Toronto Globe and Mail; Jan. 16

Snowboarders file lawsuit to open Utah resort to them
Alta is only one of three resorts in the United States that remains closed to snowboarders, a situation that a lawsuit filed by snowboarders to open the Utah resort to them aims to change.
Deseret News; Jan. 16

Bill to repeal Colorado renewable energy mandate dies in committee
On Wednesday, three measures offered by Republican legislators were killed in committee, with a bill to repeal the mandate that rural electric cooperatives obtain 20 percent of their power from renewable-energy sources by 2020, another banning the use of welfare debit cards at marijuana outlets and another that would allow Coloradans to buy out-of-state health-insurance policies all rejected on party-line votes in the Senate State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee.
Durango Herald; Jan. 16

Phoenix, Salt Lake City have housed all chronically homeless veterans
Using an approach known nationally has Housing First, which provides chronically homeless people with a place to live, Phoenix officials said that all of its estimated 221 homeless veterans had been placed in housing, joining Salt Lake City on the list of cities that had housed all of their chronically homeless veterans.
New York Times; Jan. 16

Weather in U.S. last year 'benign' except in Colorado, California
The weather data for 2013 found that last year in the United States was a "normal" one when compared to previous years, although California recorded its driest year on record, and then, of course, Colorado experienced its worst wildfire disaster on record, as well as widespread flooding on the Front Range.
Christian Science Monitor; Jan. 16

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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