Polis: Poll Confirms Support for Conservation Agenda


By Eric Galatas

February 4, 2019

DENVER – Voters in Colorado and other western states continue to support conservation policies for publicly owned lands, putting them at odds with the Trump administration’s energy dominance agenda, according to the ninth annual Conservation in the West Poll from Colorado College.

Gov. Jared Polis says the poll’s results show a clear mandate to keep public lands accessible for outdoor recreation, which he sees as a vital part of the Colorado way of life.

“That’s really one of the reasons that people choose to live here, why people move here, why people visit our state,” Polis says. “Over 500,000 people work in outdoor recreation and tourism that puts food on the table for their families.”  Read more

Letter: Bill an effort to celebrate state public lands


February 27, 2019

To the editor:

Public lands in Wyoming and the West are, by definition, for everybody. These lands have been managed for multiple use by the people of our state, country and world for more than 50 years.

A simple effort to create a day of recognition of the diverse recreational benefits of all public lands has met resistance at the Wyoming Legislative session again this year.

Other states use annual Public Lands Day events to get people outside to participate in service projects and give something back to the natural resources they utilize throughout the year.  Read more.

Going public

Support for public lands, voiced in new poll, comes to life in legislation

By Tracy Chamberlin

February 7, 2019

Parks. Trails. Open space. Wilderness. All of these natural wonders across the West are key to outdoor recreation driving much of the economy and lifestyle of Coloradans.


In a recent poll, 73 percent of Colorado residents said they consider themselves outdoor recreation enthusiasts with 74 percent adding that being near public lands was one of the reasons they chose to live here. In addition, 90 percent believe the outdoor recreation economy is key to the future of the West. Read more.

Western voters care more about climate than ‘energy dominance’



By Nick Bowlin

February 7, 2019

According to a recent poll, voters across the West are substantially more worried about climate change now than they were just two years ago. What’s more, a majority identify as “conservationists.” These attitudes are at odds with the priorities of President Donald Trump’s administration, which have included aggressively cutting environmental regulations while shrinking national monuments and encouraging fossil fuel production on public lands.

These findings come from Colorado College’s annual Conservation in the West poll, which surveys residents in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming on issues of climate, energy and public lands. This year, a majority of the approximately 400 respondents in each state rated climate change a serious problem, and every state saw an increase in climate concern.  Read more.

Colorado College poll finds voters back land protection


By Faith Miller

February 6, 2019

The ninth annual Colorado College State of the Rockies Project Conservation in the West Poll shows Colorado voters embrace protection and accessibility of public lands and strongly disapprove of President Donald Trump’s agenda (including removing national monument protections, removing Clean Water Act safeguards for streams and wetlands and permitting increased oil and gas production on 80 percent of Western states’ “critical habitat” for the threatened sage grouse).

The poll surveyed voters in Colorado, Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming.  Read more.

Poll: Western Voters Soundly Reject Trumpian Conservation Ideas


by Chris Bianchi

February 5, 2019

A Colorado College poll of Western voters found that they increasingly favor conservation efforts, with Colorado voters among the more conservation-focused in the region.

The poll asked voters in Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming and Idaho about a variety of issues related to conservation, wildlife, energy use and climate change, and respondents supported virtually every conservation effort by a wide margin.

For example, 73 percent of Coloradans said they’d vote to raise taxes to pay for conservation funding. Even self-identified Republicans said they’d endorse tax increases to help fund such projects — a general rebuke of the Trump administration’s “energy dominance” agenda.  Read more.

As Many Expected, Acting Secretary David Bernhardt Is Nominated To Head Interior Department





By Nate Hegyi

Originally published on February 5, 2019 3:24 pm

President Donald Trump took to Twitter to nominate David Bernhardt as the nation’s next Interior Secretary. The former oil industry lobbyist and longtime government employee has been acting Secretary since Ryan Zinke stepped down last month amid questions about his ethics and conflicts of interest.

Bernhardt served as Deputy Interior Secretary during Zinke’s 21-month tenure at the helm of the department. In that role, he was largely responsible for running daily operations in Washington. During his tenure, he has reduced regulations and helped open millions of acres of federally-managed public lands to potential oil and gas development.  Read more.

Poll: NM Voters Show Bipartisan Support for Public Lands

Public News Service

February 1, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, M.N. – Voters in eight Western states, including New Mexico, oppose policies by the Trump administration that shrink national monuments and promote oil and gas development as part of an “energy dominance” agenda.

Both Republicans and Democrats responding to the ninth annual “Conservation in the West” poll said conservation, not resource extraction, should guide management on public lands.

Robert Fanger, chief communications officer with the Hispanic Access Foundation, says Latinos have historically been left out of the conversation about public lands, but that is changing.  Read more

Bill would prohibit oil and gas leases in Nevada’s Ruby Mountains


by Benjamin Spillman

Published 5:00 p.m. PT Jan. 31, 2019

Nevada’s picturesque Ruby Mountains would be entirely off limits to oil and gas leasing under a bill in the U.S. Senate.

Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto wrote the bill that would prohibit the Secretary of the Interior from issuing oil and gas leases throughout the entire 450,000-acre Ruby Mountains Ranger District.

The bill would not affect grazing, mining or any other existing use on the land.

The bill comes as the U.S. Forest Service is reviewing a proposal that would offer leases on about 50,000 acres, including near popular areas for outdoor recreation such as Lamoille Canyon and Harrison Pass.

Read more