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Golden Triangle At Conrad
Photo courtesy of Rick and Susie Graetz
Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014
produced daily by Shellie Nelson

Editor's Notes...

West map In the Rockies today, job development efforts, large and small, as well as work to curb energy use, large and small, in the Rocky Mountain West.

Lockheed Martin will add 500 aerospace jobs over the next eight years in Colorado's Jefferson County, which already leads the nation in commercial aerospace jobs, after the state's $15.5-million tax incentive package sealed the deal.

In Idaho's Teton County, the Business Development Center is seeking to capitalize on the area's recreational opportunities to draw companies that provide the gear for those activities, and Sego Skis, is the first to answer that call.

The company plans to manufacture and sell five types of skis in Victor, with the skis to be the first to bear the "Made in Teton Valley" logo.

Teton Valley Business Development Center Executive Director Brian McDermott is working to put that logo on other gear designed for the area's mountain terrain, and is seeking other small-footprint, low-impact businesses that pay higher than average wages to make the move to the Idaho valley.

Also in Colorado and Idaho, efforts to reduce energy consumption are underway.

Denver is targeting more than 6,000 large commercial and multifamily buildings in an energy-efficiency program designed to lower their electricity use, saving an estimated $1.3 billion in power costs.

Among the first 57 buildings to voluntarily join the Denver City Energy Project is the Brown Palace Hotel, which was built in 1892, and has "many great opportunities for energy efficiency," according to Brenna St. Onge, who heads the hotel's sustainability committee.

In Idaho, Ketchum is taking a relatively smaller step toward reducing electricity use by installing solar panels on the Ore Wagon Museum, which are expected to produce enough electricity for the museum and some for the neighboring city hall.

Montana Public Radio will broadcast Mountain West Voices at 7:30 p.m.

Tonight's broadcast will be the second installment of the story of Joyce Vashro, an Englishwoman who married a U.S. serviceman and came to Montana 70 years ago.

She and her baby embarked on the Queen Mary with 2800 other war brides. Like them, she says she hardly knew the husband she was rejoining, and had no idea what awaited her in Montana.

Tune into Montana Public Radio tonight at 7:30 to hear the broadcast, or listen online via the Mountain West Voices website.

Rockies today

Colorado's tax incentive draws 500 new aerospace jobs
Jefferson County has 42 aerospace companies that provide 6,000 jobs in the Colorado county, and the county's ranking as first in the nation for private-sector aerospace employment seems more secure, now that Lockheed's Commercial Space division has pledged to bring another 500 new jobs to the county over the next eight years in exchange for a $15.5 million job-growth incentive package granted by the Colorado Office of Economic Development in September.
Denver Post; Oct. 29

Ski manufacturer sets up shop in Idaho's Teton Valley
Teton Valley Business Development Center Executive Director Brian McDermott is reaching out to businesses that cater to top athletes in outdoor activities, like skiing and mountain biking, and the brothers who founded Sego Skis are just the kind of business the Idaho valley is seeking, with a 5,000-square-foot building in Victor, where they will make and sell five types of skis, as well as other ski gear and offer ski tune-ups, set to open on Nov. 5.
Jackson Hole News & Guide; Oct. 29

Denver targets commercial buildings in new energy-efficiency program
There are 6,045 commercial and multifamily buildings in Denver that are larger than 10,000 square feet, and collectively, commercial buildings used nearly 5 million megawatt hours of electricity in 2013, an amount the Denver City Energy Project seeks to reduce, with 57 buildings voluntarily joining the project this year to make improvements that will reduce their energy use, including the Colorado city's historic Brown Palace Hotel.
Denver Post; Oct. 29

Idaho museum selected for Ketchum solar project
The Ketchum Energy Advisory Committee, formed earlier this year to promote alternative energy solutions in the Idaho community, announced that it had selected the Ore Wagon Museum for a solar-energy installation, and that the energy produced would be used in the museum and the adjacent city hall.
Idaho Mountain Express (Sun Valley); Oct. 29

Utah education, businesses roll out 5-year plan to boost education, economy
On Tuesday, hundreds of business, civic and education leaders rolled out Utah's Education First and Prosperity 2020, which will help the state, which CNBC ranked third in the nation for business, bring its 46th ranking in education, into the Top 10 in the nation, while Utah Gov. Gary Herbert has a 10-year plan to address the state's educational systems that is much broader, according to a spokesperson for the governor.
Deseret News; Oct. 29

Arch Coal touts Wyoming mines for lessening quarterly loss
St. Louis-based Arch Coal's quarterly report released Tuesday showed a loss of $97 million, down from the $128 million loss reported for the same quarter last year, and company officials touted an increase in production at its mines in Wyoming's Powder River Basin, as well as an increase in the price it was getting for that coal, for its improved performance.
Casper Star-Tribune; Oct. 29

Protection of sage grouse in 11 western states divides groups, experts
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has a September 2015 deadline for its decision on whether sage grouse in 11 Western states should be protected under the Endangered Species Act, and those states, conservation groups and private landowners have all pitched in to keep the bird from such protection, although results have been mixed and groups disagree about whether federal protection would help or impair current efforts to protect the species.; Oct. 29

Alberta removes wolves from park, recreation area after cattle killed
After ranchers reported the loss of 29 head of cattle in Alberta's Elk Island National Park and a neighboring provincial recreation area, Alberta Environment ordered the removal of six wolves from the area, although there are concerns about how the public will respond to the news that wolves are being killed in the park because they're killing cattle being grazed in the park.
Edmonton Journal; Oct. 29

Calgary company reports record production at Alberta oilsands site
Alberta-based MEG Energy, which uses the steam-assisted gravity drainage system to produce oil from its oilsands holdings said sales were down this past quarter despite increased production due to the need to pledge barrels of oil to fill the Access Pipeline, which moves oil from northeast Alberta to near Edmonton, of which MEG owns half, and company officials said a similar pledge to fill Enbridge's Flanagan South pipeline, that runs from Illinois to Oklahoma, will affect earnings in the current quarter.
Calgary Herald; Oct. 29


Idaho joins other states in opposing EPA's rule to clarify Clean Water Act
Last week, Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and state Attorney General Lawrence Wasden wrote the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to withdraw a proposed rule to clarify the Clean Water Act, citing concerns about how the proposed change would affect the Gem State's farmers and ranchers.
Idaho Mountain Express (Sun Valley); Oct. 29


Perfect time for Idaho congressman to try again on Boulder-White Clouds
Idaho U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson has tried for a decade to get his Central Idaho Economic Development and Recreation Act (CIEDRA) through Congress, but the well-crafted bill that would protect 300,000 acres of the Boulder-White Cloud Mountains as wilderness has thus far not passed, but with Utah U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop poised to take the helm of the House Committee on Natural Resources and other factors, Simpson may be successful this time, or if not, there's always the option of having President Obama designate the area as a national monument.
Idaho Statesman; Oct. 26

Mountain West News is a program of the O'Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West
at The University of Montana.
"T his is a very complex and difficult situation. What happens when the greater Edmonton public hears that we're killing wolves in a provincial park because of livestock grazing? We have no idea what killing six wolves is going to do."

Paul Frame, a carnivore specialist with Alberta Environment, concerned about public reaction to the killing of wolves because ranchers grazing cattle in the Cooking Lake-Blackfoot Grazing, Wildlife and Provincial Recreation Area, blamed wolves for killing cows.
- Edmonton Journal

On The Bookshelf
Barbara Theroux provides a preview of titles from HumanitiesMontana 15th Festival of the Book


Mountain West Perspectives
Montana releases draft statewide water management plan


Mountain West Voices
Hear weekly stories from the Rocky Mountain West as gathered by Clay Scott

Mountain West News is a program of the O'Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West

at the

The University of Montana