Mountain West (CO ID MT NV UT WY)

"Interior Shrinks Oil, Gas Lease Sale Near Utah National Parks"

"The Trump administration on Tuesday responded to fierce local and environmental group opposition to oil and gas leasing near three Utah national parks and said much of that land will be left out of the Bureau of Land Management’s upcoming oil and gas lease sale for the state."

Source: Bloomberg Environment, 08/12/2020

Start Tracking Wildfires Before Things Get Hot

With little (and big) fires just about everywhere these days, reporters could use help tracking the myriad blazes. Fortunately, firefighting experts have developed some handy databases that journalists can tap into to better cover this story. Plus, other kinds of data tools to keep on top of fire hazards. And SEJ’s new “Issue: Wildfire” resource page, which includes wildfire headlines from EJToday and more wildfire stories from SEJournal.

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"Mine Consultant Agreed Nevada Plant In Danger"

"A botanist hired by a company planning to mine one of the most promising deposits of lithium in the world believes a rare desert wildflower at the Nevada site should be protected under the Endangered Species Act, a move that new documents show could jeopardize the project."

Source: AP, 08/05/2020

‘I Can’t Not Shoot This’ — For Photojournalist, Preparation Meets Opportunity

Wildfire photographer Helen Richardson, in a companion EJ InSight case study, shares a personal account of her efforts to capture compelling images from Colorado’s deadly Waldo Canyon Fire. Plus, more of her photos and a report on how to prepare properly to shoot disasters while protecting yourself, including from COVID-19.

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F/8, N95 and Be There — Wildfire Photojournalism in the Pandemic Era

Safety has long been an element of smart disaster photojournalism. But there’s a new dimension to the risk now — coronavirus. Wildfire photographer Helen Richardson writes in the latest EJ InSight column about how to protect yourself, how to be prepared and how to get the story. Plus, a photo slidehow and a case study on confronting the journalistic challenges in one major fire.

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"Judge Denies Nevada Off-Road Challenge To Grouse Protection"

"A federal judge has upheld the U.S. Forest Service’s authority to keep a 250-mile (400-kilometer) motorcycle race out of sage grouse habitat in Nevada’s high desert, rejecting a lawsuit by off-road vehicle enthusiasts who argued the agency illegally short-circuited the environmental review process."

Source: AP, 07/14/2020

Former Public Affairs Officers Push Back on Advanced Industry Reaction, Plus Police Scanner Transparency and Ag-Gag Ruling

When the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issued a press release with favorable industry response to changes in a rule protecting migratory birds — before actually proposing the new rule — a group of former agency officials cried foul. Plus, why encrypted police scanners are a problem and an ag-gag ruling, all in the latest WatchDog opinion column. 

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