Environment

Aaron Kunz / EarthFix

The Environmental Protection Agency is responding to criticism that the agency is lax in enforcing regulations like the  Clean Water Act.

 


Photo by Alejandro Robles

The vaquita is a small species of porpoise that lives exclusively in the Gulf of California. The mammal is on the brink of extinction due to irresponsible fishing methods. Boise filmmaker Matthew Podolsky has partnered with Leonardo DiCaprio to produce a documentary chronicling the plight of the vaquita.

madidifilm.com

The Bolivian government is planning massive hydro-electric dam projects on rivers that provide life for thousands of indigenous people in the Amazon Basin. Area filmmaker Hayley Stuart traveled the rivers in a kayak to document the lives that would be affected. Stuart joins Idaho Matters to discuss making "Still River, Silent Jungle."

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The Idaho Environmental Forum is a nonprofit, non-partisan educational organization that encourages productive discourse on environmental issues facing the Gem State. Next week, the IEF will meet to outline their legislative goals for 2019. Idaho Matters discusses the issues that will surface in the upcoming legislative session and how they may impact Idaho's landscape and resources.

As the partial government shutdown stretches toward a third week, both the public and public employees alike are feeling the pain. But there’s another casualty: public information.

Thomas VanSelus / Flickr

Winter is when the federal government starts spending dollars to prepare for the wildfire season, but the ongoing shutdown has put some of this preparation in limbo.

Talayeh Saghatchian / Flickr

The Treasure Valley community of Nampa is again under siege by the birds. Thousands have descended on the town for the third year in a row.

A new study shows US greenhouse gas emissions are going up. The natural gas boom is partially to blame. It’s a big industry in our region.

McCall Says 'No' To Stibnite Mine Agreement

Jan 9, 2019
Midas Gold

On Monday, the McCall City Council decided not to sign a community agreement with the mining company Midas Gold.

 

Nicholas D. / Flickr

Conservation is always a big issue in Idaho and 2018 was no exception. We look back and forward to 2019 when it comes to wildlife conservation, access to public lands and preserving our forests. Brad Brooks, the Public Lands Director for the Wilderness Society and Brian Brooks, the Executive Director of the Idaho Wildlife Federation talk to host Gemma Gaudette.

David Moskowitz Documents The Last Of The Selkirk Caribou

Jan 2, 2019
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David Moskowitz is a biologist, photographer and certified wildlife tracker. His work focuses on the fauna of the interior of the Pacific Northwest and his latest book, Caribou Rainforest, follows the migration of a shrinking herd through the Selkirk Range. Moskowitz joins Idaho Matters to describe the shrinking herds of mountain caribou.

The Trump Administration has declined to extend federal protections for two plants native to the Mountain West.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service posted a list of 13 species from around the country it recently considered - but decided to not include - on its endangered and threatened species lists. The list includes the Utah's Frisco Buckwheat and Wyoming's Fremont County Rockcress.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

The holidays are a time of delicious treats and gifts. But it’s also a time for plastic waste, whether it’s the wrapper on a Christmas cookie or the packaging on a tree ornament.

 

CHARLES (CHUCK) PETERSON / FLICKR

In 1954, Bing Crosby set expectations for Christmas weather that are becoming difficult to meet 65 years later. We talk to a meteorologist about the possibility of a white Christmas and how climate trends are changing our holiday nostalgia.

The second round of payments to farmers affected by President Trump’s trade war with China will soon get sent out. The application deadline for growers is Jan. 15.

But the bulk of that money is largely skipping our region.

The Federal Duck Stamp Program is for the birds, at least when it comes to birdwatchers.

selwaybitterroot.org

The State of Idaho is offering special Selway-Bitterroot and Frank Church Foundation license plates to benefit conservation in the River of No Return Wilderness areas. Idaho Matters looks at that region of the state and the artist behind the license plates.

Since 1964 the Land and Water Conservation Fund has used royalties from oil and gas leasing to protect natural areas, water resources and cultural heritage, as well as to provide recreation opportunities. The Fund expired at the end of September, but both the House and Senate have proposed bills to permanently reauthorize it so its future doesn't remain in jeopardy.

Gary O. Grimm / Flickr

The Albertson family and the City of Boise are getting together to give Kathryn Albertson Park a facelift.

Hells Canyon Dam, Idaho Power, dam
ArtBrom via Flickr

Idaho, Oregon and Idaho Power have reached an agreement on operating a set of three dams in Hells Canyon that’s been years in the making. But some environmentalists aren’t happy.

ISTOCK.COM / TUPUNGATO

Parts of the Mountain West have been tangled up in long-term drought and it doesn’t look like it’s lifting anytime soon.

Western states are likely to be affected most by the Trump administration's proposal to roll back parts of the Clean Water Act. The Environmental Protection Agency would no longer give special protections to thousands of miles of seasonal streams and millions of acres of wetlands that often go dry by late summer in the arid West. That would leave states to decide whether to protect such waters themselves. 

OPEC and other foreign oil producers said Friday they’re scaling back production by about 1.2 million barrels a day. That could be good news for oil producers in the Mountain West but perhaps not so good for consumers.

Wyoming plans to appeal a U.S. District Court Judge's decision from September to put the Yellowstone grizzly bear back on endangered species act protections.

A new study says when the Trump administration shrank Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument in Utah late last year, it may have endangered scores of native bee species.

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