Energy

A new study reveals how much water the U.S. uses in energy production. The answer is a lot – 58 trillion gallons. The data breakdown may be critical information for the Mountain West, where energy industries are big, but water can be scarce.

Jackie Yamanaka

A Westmoreland Coal Company says its 3 Montana coal mines are profitable despite its current financial crunch and the company is working to keep its mines open.

If it weren’t for the snowy alpine peaks in the background, camels would look perfectly at home in the undulating yellow sand hills of Colorado’s Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve.

“It’s really a very special place. And it is very unusual. It’s almost like an alien landscape when you happen upon it,” says Vanessa Mazal, who has been visiting the national park since she was a kid and now works with the National Parks Conservation Association.

Office of Governor Matt Mead

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead spoke with international and national business leaders in Jackson about ways to diversify the state’s economy, and get off the boom and bust rollercoaster.

Jackie Yamanaka

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects wind energy jobs to grow at a steady clip, in fact faster than average for all occupations. City College is helping train those workers for the renewable energy sector.

Sustainable Energy Instructor Francisco Saldivar says he believes Montanans have a leg up in the job pool.


Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke wants to streamline the process for oil and gas development on federal lands. Zinke signed an order Thursday mandating Bureau of Land Management oil and gas lease sales be held in each state on at least a quarterly basis.

Zinke noted during a telephone press conference that under the Obama administration BLM fell far short of that legally-mandated limit.

Flickr Creative Commons/(https://flic.kr/p/o1heoP)

New terms for small solar projects across Montana might have been knowingly set to discourage development. That's based on a conversation caught on a hot mic last week during a mid-session break for a Public Service Commission meeting.


A federal judge in Washington, D.C., ruled Wednesday that the Trump administration failed to follow proper environmental procedures when it granted approval to the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline project.

It's a legal victory for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and environmentalists, who protested for months against the pipeline. Oil started flowing through it earlier this month. The tribe fears that the pipeline, which crosses the Missouri River just upstream of its reservation, could contaminate its drinking water and sacred lands.

Crude oil is now flowing through the Dakota Access Pipeline, despite months of protests against it by Native American tribes and environmental groups.

The pipeline spans more than 1,000 miles from North Dakota to Illinois and cost some $3.8 billion to construct. It is expected to transport approximately 520,000 barrels of oil daily.

(Flickr Photo/Shannon Patrick) (https://flic.kr/p/dVnX4W)

Northern Plains Resource Council is the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit filed today challenging the Trump Administration’s approval of the Keystone XL pipeline. A coalition of environmental groups are part of the lawsuit filed in federal district court in Great Falls.

Northern Plains is challenging the permit based on what they call “outdated and incomplete information” from a 2014 Environmental Impact Statement used to determine the pipeline’s threat to the health of water, land, and communities it crosses​.

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