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Climate
The Rocky Mountain Incident Management team battles the 416 Fire. 416 Fire Facebook

Large Wildfires Scorch Forests in Drought-Stricken Southwest

A number of wildfires are currently ablaze in the Western U.S. as severe drought envelops much of the region.

The 416 Fire in Colorado, which has scorched 27,420 acres since it broke out on June 1, has forced the evacuation of more than 2,000 homes and the closure of all 1.8 million acres of the San Juan National Forest.

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"These are lands that have been stewarded by indigenous people for thousands of years, and now it's a responsibility of everyone to take that into consideration." @nativesoutdoors / Instagram

Posting Your Hike on Instagram? Now You Can Tag Your Location’s Indigenous Name

By Isabelle Morrison

Public spaces are for everyone, but how we perceive them and interact with them is contextual. Some activists are making their statements on the public canvas all around the world. And it's catching on.

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Fracking
The view from lease parcel COC77996 looking across the Colorado River and DeBeque State Wildlife Refuge toward parcel COC77999 and the Roan Plateau. Peter Hart / Wilderness Workshop

Fracking in Colorado: Lawsuit Targets Federal Shell Game Hiding Harm to Communities and Wildlife

Conservation groups on Thursday sued Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and the Bureau of Land Management for approving new leases to allow fracking on more than 45,000 acres in western Colorado, including within communities and within a half-mile of a K-12 public school, without analyzing or disclosing environmental and public health threats as required by federal law.

"Fracking is a filthy, dangerous business, and dodging environmental analysis puts people and public lands at risk," said Diana Dascalu-Joffe, a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. "The Trump administration is trying to ignore science, public health and climate change threats to enrich corporate polluters, but it can't shrug off the law."

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Energy
Suncor Energy owns the only oil refinery in Colorado. Max and Dee Bernt. CC-BY-2.0 / Flickr

Colorado Communities Sue ExxonMobil and Suncor for Climate Damages

By Elliott Negin

Two Colorado counties and the city of Boulder are suing ExxonMobil and Suncor Energy, Canada's largest oil company, to hold them responsible for climate change-related damage to their communities.

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Popular
Medano Creek, Great Sand Dunes National Park, Alamosa, CO. Gail K E / Flickr

Conservation Groups: Fracking, Drilling Would Ruin Public Lands Near Colorado's Great Sand Dunes National Park

Conservation groups are calling on the Trump administration to cancel plans to lease thousands of acres of federal public lands for oil and gas development near western Colorado's Great Sand Dunes National Park and Blanca Peak without fully analyzing environmental or cultural harms.

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Renewable Energy
Workers install solar panels on a building in Superior, Colorado. Dave Dugdale / Flickr

Still Cheaper Than Coal: A Report on the Economics of Solar Power in Colorado

By Rama Zakaria and Graham McCahan

A newly-updated report is shedding light on what President Trump's solar trade tariffs may mean for one state—and underscoring a tremendous opportunity to move forward toward clean energy, with all the benefits it can bring.

Xcel Energy filed its 30-day bid report update with the Colorado Public Utilities Commission on March 1. The update follows Xcel's filing at the end of last year, in response to an "all-source solicitation," as part of its Electric Resource Plan and its proposed Colorado Energy Plan.

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Animals
A mountain lion mother and cub in the Rocky Mountains. Rarepic in / Flickr

Plan to Kill Colorado Mountain Lions, Black Bears Prompts Lawsuit Against U.S. Fish & Wildlife

Three conservation and animal-protection organizations sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Thursday for funding a Colorado Parks and Wildlife plan to kill hundreds of mountain lions and dozens of black bears without analyzing the risks to the state's environment.

The multi-year plan to kill black bears and mountain lions in the Piceance Basin and Upper Arkansas River areas of Colorado is intended to artificially boost the mule deer population where habitat has been degraded by oil and gas drilling. The killing plans were approved despite overwhelming public opposition, and over the objection of leading scientific voices in Colorado.

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iStock

A Stargazer’s Guide to Protected Dark Skies

By Sabine Bergmann

For millennia, human beings have gazed into the firmament and been awed by the thousands of stars, galaxies, nebulae and other cosmic wonders visible to the naked eye. But in recent generations, much of humanity has become divorced from these marvels. Today, at least 80 percent of people living in the United States and Europe are so inundated with light pollution that they can't even see our own Milky Way, let alone our neighboring galaxies like Andromeda.

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Insights
garywockner.com

Colorado Water Plan Has Become 'Colorado Dam Plan'

You'd have thought the earth moved exactly two years ago with all the ballyhoo at the State Capitol when Gov. John Hickenlooper unveiled the final Colorado Water Plan. I stood in the west foyer of the Capitol as every TV camera in the city pointed at Hickenlooper and his then-Colorado Water Conservation Board director, James Eklund. Bold promises were made that the plan was going to save our rivers, farms, cities, and the whole state from the coming catastrophe of population growth.

I was deeply involved in the Colorado Water Plan process, and at the time I issued a big word of caution in the form of a newspaper column that was printed in seven outlets across the state.

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