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Theodora Johnson, WLJ Correspondent

Sep 4, 2015
Death by fire is threatening a growing number of livestock operations in the Northwest. As of Sept. 2, almost 2 million acres of active, large fires raged—mostly in Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon. Many of the infernos are less than 50 percent contained, according to the National Inter-agency Fire Center.

Aug 14, 2015
It’s mid-August, and an all-familiar haze has settled into the Northwest. “Smells like money,” said one rural resident of northern California. Indeed, “fire season” seems to be the new timber industry in the West. The U.S. Forest Service now spends over $1 billion annually on fire suppression.

Jul 10, 2015
An eastern Oregon family with a long history in ranching is fighting to keep its cow/calf operation afloat against an onslaught of blows from the federal government. Two members of the Hammond family have been charged under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 for starting two range fires that ended up on federal land.

Jul 2, 2015
The name of the game is politics; not preservation, says the livestock industry of the Obama administration’s latest regulatory move on the greater sage-grouse. Last Monday, industries and a host of local governments submitted protests on the administration’s plans to amp up regulations on 50 million acres of federal land across the West.

May 1, 2015
By the numbers, the gray wolf in Oregon is on the path to delisting from the state’s endangered species list. Oregon’s wolves have reached four breeding pairs for three consecutive three years. This is considered to be a conservative count. These numbers represent the trigger point in the Oregon Wolf Plan: The delisting process will begin.

Apr 24, 2015
Ranchers in the Mono Basin along the Nevada/California border are breathing a sigh of relief: The federal government has decided not to list the “bi-state sage-grouse” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The decision was a change of course for U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), which in 2013 proposed the bird for listing as “threatened.