Monday, February 3, 2014

Rockies Today, Feb. 3

Posted By on Mon, Feb 3, 2014 at 11:36 AM

Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

Satellite images raise questions about bitumen extraction in Alberta
Documents obtained from the deputy minister of Natural Resources Canada by Postmedia News under access-to-information laws indicate that satellite imagery reviewed by the federal government of a bitumen leak in northeastern Alberta indicate a rapid rate of subsidence and lift in areas where steam-based extraction methods are used to pull crude from oilsands.
Calgary Herald (Postmedia News); Feb. 3

U.S. State Department report may clear way for Keystone XL pipeline
On Friday, the long-awaited environmental analysis of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline was released that found approval of the pipeline to move Alberta crude south to refineries in the United States would not significantly increase greenhouse gas emissions as development of the Canadian oilsands would occur with or without the pipeline.
New York Times; Feb. 3

Keystone XL report lifts Canadian dollar
On Monday morning, the Canadian loonie's value improved to 90.26 cents U.S. as optimism rose on the completion of the Keystone XL pipeline after the U.S. State Department released a report that said the pipeline would produce less greenhouse gases than moving the crude by rail.
Calgary Herald (Canadian Press); Feb. 3

Alberta-bound megaload pulls into N. Montana community
The first of three megaloads headed from Oregon's Port of Umatilla to Alberta has made its way to Choteau, a small community in Northern Montana, where the massive load of equipment is generating curiosity.
Great Falls Tribune; Feb. 1

Rocky Mountain Power offers new kind of wind contract in Wyoming
Using the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's ruling in a contract dispute between Rocky Mountain Power and Wasatch Wind over the price the utility must pay for power generated at the Wyoming wind farm, Rocky Mountain Power is asking the Wyoming Public Service Commission to consider a new basis for the price it must pay for that wind power: A higher price where new transmission lines are built, and a lower one where no new lines must be built.
Casper Star-Tribune; Feb. 3

SE Idaho community seeks grant to start bus service to Jackson, Wyo.
Rexburg has applied for a grant from the Idaho Transportation Department to help start a twice-daily bus run between the southeastern Idaho community and Jackson, Wyo.
Twin Falls Times-News (Idaho Falls Post-Register); Feb. 2

Western states' bighorn sheep study seeks answers on die-offs
Wyoming, Colorado and Montana have teamed up on a three-year study of bighorn sheep herds in those western states to try to figure out what makes the animals suddenly fall prey to pathogens.
Billings Gazette (Casper Star-Tribune); Feb. 3

Teck Resources reports chemical spill in B.C. into Columbia River
A spill last Tuesday at Teck Resources' smelter at Trail, B.C. released between 5,283 and 6,340 gallons of a sodium hydroxide solution into a sewer line that goes to a treatment plant that discharges into the Columbia River north of Spokane, Wash., and officials confirmed that the treatment plant process would have little effect on the solution as it passes through the plant. The article contains a timeline of problems reported at the smelter.; Feb. 2

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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