Laramie, WY – A Powder River Basin area activist says that gas development is proposed near the town of Pavillion and that it has some residents nervous. Area activist Deb Thomas says Encana plans to drill some 500 gas wells on a private block of land. Thomas says a meeting is scheduled for seven o'clock tonight at the Pavillion community center.
Laramie, WY – Wyoming land trusts are receiving record numbers of so-called conservation easements," a way for farmers and ranchers to donate land to a land trust to protect it from future development.
Many are rushing to donate their land because a 2006 federal tax law that offers deductions for easements is set to expire at the end of the year.
Some groups worry that if the tax law expires, conservation easements will slow.
Cheyenne, WY – The Wyoming Attorney General's Office says it's working to settle a lawsuit filed by a former prison inmate who claims that he was beaten and sexually assaulted at the state penitentiary in Rawlins.
The inmate filed a federal lawsuit filed last December. He says he warned prison officials when he arrived at the Rawlins prison in August 2004 that he had provided information to Sweetwater County prosecutors that had sent his cousin to the same prison.
CASPER, Wyo. – A key producer of coal in Wyoming is up for sale.
Rio Tinto Energy America operates three coal mines on the Wyoming side of the Powder River Basin, and directly employs about 1,562 workers in Wyoming. The company also operates mines in Colorado and Montana.
Its parent company, Rio Tinto P-L-C, announced today (Thursday) that it intends to explore the possible sale of Rio Tinto Energy America.
Casper, Wy – The Cowboy State Games are ending. The board of directors for the amateur sports contest announced Wednesday that the event had run its course. The decision came after longtime executive director Eileen Ford accepted a new job. The Cowboy State Games have been held for the past 22 years, bringing contestants together in track and field competitions, wrestling and other events. In 2002, the event moved from the summer to being held in winter. The games were in jeopardy last year because of lack of funds.
Yellowstone National Park – Yellowstone National Park, on the site of a giant volcano, has begun swelling up. Scientists say it could mean that molten rock is accumulating beneath the surface. But a professor of geophysics at the University of Utah -- Robert Smith -- says there is no evidence of an imminent volcanic eruption. He says many giant volcanic craters around the world go up and down over decades, without erupting. Smith and colleagues report in Friday's issue of the journal
Laramie, WY – The city of Gillette is considering mixing water pumped during coal-bed methane gas production with regular drinking water to stretch the city's supply in the face of a projected water shortage.
Steve Peterson is Gillette's utility engineering manager. He says the city has spoken with some in the CBM industry about providing water as a short-term solution. Companies pump water from the ground in coal-bed methane production.
Laramie, WY – A Bureau of Land Management wild horse roundup will go ahead this month, after all.
The BLM previously said it did not have the money to gather wild horses and take care of them in Wyoming until 2008. Then Governor Dave Freudenthal and Wyoming's congressional delegation vigorously protested the delay. The Bureau of Land Management's Steven Hall says the BLM heard those protests loud and clear.
Laramie, WY – The reason a proposed statewide smoking ban will not be taken up by a legislative committee is because it does not have enough support. State Senator Charles Scott of Casper says the reason a joint legislative committee bill did not have a chance of being heard in the short budget session that starts in February.
It will be quite controversial and take a lot of time, and that's trouble in a 20-day budget session. I think we have the votes to bring it to the general session, but not to the budget session.