The recent Los Padres fire exemplifies a growing trend: Mexican drug cartels setting up shop in California wilderness and parkland.
In the Yaak Valley of Montana, environmentalists have been talking to loggers, snowmobilers and other longtime opponents of wilderness protection about the future of public lands. Rick Bass writes of his involvement in a cooperative effort that could lead to the first wilderness-area designation in the state in a quarter-century.
"A limestone 'quarry alley' 45 miles west of downtown Louisville resembles the scarred landscapes of eastern Kentucky, flattened by blasting for coal. ... Limestone, it turns out, is the key ingredient for stripping sulfur dioxide from smokestacks, helping to reduce acid rain and asthma-inducing haze."
"The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reissued a permit Friday to Coeur Alaska Inc. for its Kensington mine plans, clearing the way for construction to resume on the final component of the complex that's been on hold since 2006 because of environmentalists' lawsuits."
"The reclassification of nearly 1 million acres of land around the Grand Canyon to prevent new mining claims comes with a fundamental change in how the U.S. Forest Service does business with mining companies."
Should Mt. St. Helens, which erupted almosty 30 years ago, be a National Park? There is a debate over whether the land should be used for recreation or to study how landscapes recover from violent disturbance.
The US and Mexico are joining forces to enhance conservation in the area around Big Bend, in Texas, and El Carmen in the northern Mexican states of Chihuahua and Coahuila.
"Water managers and the White House signed a crucial contract Thursday that promises a much-needed infusion of federal dollars for the Everglades."
"U.S. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has sided with environmental groups on several challenges contending that permits issued to a Tennessee Valley Authority coal-fired power plant failed to properly account for air pollution."
"A federal judge let stand a Bush administration rule that makes it easier for companies involved in mountaintop coal mining to dump debris near streams."