Thursday, February 2, 2023


Palestinian advocates praise a new fact sheet on discrimination, Pennsylvania considers extending deadlines for abuse claims, and North Dakota's corporate farming debate affects landowners and tribes.


Vice President Kamala Harris urges Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, the House begins the process to impeach the Homeland Security Secretary, and the Federal Reserve nudges interest rates up.


Is bird flu, inflation or price gouging to blame for astronomical egg prices? Pregnancy can be life-changing or life-ending depending on where you live, and nine tribal schools are transforming their outdoor spaces into community gathering areas.

Court Ruling Adds to Challenges Facing Wyoming Coal Industry


Tuesday, August 16, 2022   

A federal court's decision to require the Department of Interior to consider the potential health and climate impacts of coal mining on public lands could finally give sovereign tribes in Wyoming a seat at the table.

Connie Wilbert, director of the Sierra Club Wyoming Chapter, said until now, federal agencies just paid lip service to concerns raised by tribes about impacts to drinking water, air quality and their way of life.

"This is a big step towards requiring much more serious consideration and full disclosure of all of the impacts that coal leasing on federal land will have on tribes," Wilbert contended.

Coal industry groups warned the decision would put a question mark on future plans. The ruling reinstates a moratorium on federal coal leasing established under the Obama administration, a pause intended to give agencies time to investigate the cumulative impacts of coal mining. The moratorium has been opposed by industry groups and state officials concerned about possible lost jobs and tax revenues.

Wilbert argued getting off coal will be far less expensive than the financial and human costs brought on by more frequent and intense wildfires, floods and prolonged drought. She believes the way to help workers and communities dependent on the fossil-fuel industry is not to pretend climate change is not happening.

"It's to find ways to change our economy, our economic activity in this state and other states, in ways that aren't so harmful to us all," Wilbert asserted.

Coal operators hold enough leases to continue mining through the next decade, but according to a 2021 analysis, 90% of coal must remain in the ground in order to avert the worst-case projections of leading scientists.

Wilbert emphasized recent court rulings, along with passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in Congress to boost clean energy production, makes it obvious the age of coal is coming to an end.

"We have to stop using fossil fuels as an energy source as quickly as we can to avert the worst of climate change," Wilbert stressed. "We don't need to start 10 years from now, we need to start today."

Disclosure: The Sierra Club's Wyoming Chapter contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Endangered Species and Wildlife, and Energy Policy. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
Protestors at the University of California-Berkeley demonstrate in support of student groups that passed a bylaw pledging not to invite pro-Zionist speakers. (Palestine Legal)

Social Issues

Groups fighting for Palestinian rights are praising a new fact sheet on religious discrimination from the U.S. Department of Education's Office for …

Social Issues

Lawmakers and immigrants-rights activists in the Commonwealth are hoping to pass the Language Access and Inclusion Act, which would dramatically …


New U.S. Department of Agriculture rules will target fraud and increase oversight of the $64 billion-a-year organic food industry. In Iowa, the …

While mortality rates for pregnant women have decreased globally, they continue to rise in the United States, with Black women three times more likely to die during pregnancy than white women. (Inez/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

By Jennifer Weiss-Wolf for Ms. Magazine.Broadcast version by Eric Galatas for Colorado News Connection reporting for the Ms. Magazine-Public News …

Health and Wellness

With Black History Month underway, Wisconsin researchers and support groups are highlighting the disparities in cases of Alzheimer's disease…

Social Issues

A measure in the Washington State Legislature would provide free school meals to K-12 students, but nutrition service workers are worried they are …

Social Issues

Advocates and stakeholders have solutions for the Virginia Employment Commission to get through its backlog of unemployment appeal cases. According …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021