Mountain West (CO ID MT NV UT WY)

Cascadia Bioregion Rife With Energy, Environment Troubles To Report in 2023

Iconic critters like salmon, orca and wolves. Climate controversies like natural gas greenwashing and carbon auctions. And wildfire fallout like “smoke-a-geddon.” These are just some of the wide array of stories worth covering as environmental journalists scan Cascadia, the huge area encompassing Washington, Oregon and Idaho, and stretching from Alaska to Utah. This special TipSheet, part of our 2023 Journalists’ Guide to Energy & Environment, outlines top issues in the region, offering insights, resources and story angles.

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The 2023 Journalists’ Guide to Energy & Environment

SEJournal looks ahead to key issues in the coming year with this “2023 Journalists’ Guide to Energy & Environment” special report.​ Check out the guide’s various TipSheets and Backgrounders, and stay tuned in coming weeks for more, including an overview analysis, as well as a special look at environmental issues in the Pacific Northwest.

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Major Prairie Dog Die-Off Had Consequences For Other Animals, Wildland

"When plague struck black-tailed prairie dogs in the Thunder Basin National Grassland in Wyoming in 2017, a huge die-off followed. It spelled disaster for the burrowing rodents. But for researchers, it provided an opportunity for a “natural experiment” in the consequences of a single species’ collapse."

Source: Washington Post, 01/17/2023

Water-Sharing in the West: An Urgent and Complicated Environmental Story

Water has always been a precious commodity in the western states. Now, with rapid population growth and a drying climate, the way this resource is shared and distributed is becoming more contentious across the region. Freelance journalist Jennifer Oldham talks about the tensions between supply and demand and how to drill down into water rights laws and policies.

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"Great Salt Lake On Track To Disappear In Five Years, Scientists Warn"

"Without dramatic cuts to water consumption, Utah’s Great Salt Lake is on track to disappear within five years, a dire new report warns, imperiling ecosystems and exposing millions of people to toxic dust from the drying lake bed."

Source: Washington Post, 01/09/2023

"EPA Investigating Colorado For Discriminatory Air Pollution"

"The Environmental Protection Agency is investigating whether Colorado’s regulation of air pollution from industrial facilities discriminates against Hispanic residents and other racial minorities, according to a letter released Wednesday."

Source: AP, 01/02/2023

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