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Fracking ballot initiative gets state OK for petition drive

An Encana operated drilling rig surrounded by a sound wall active in Colorado's Denvery-Julesburg Basin. (Image courtesy of Encana Corp.)

DENVER (AP) — Backers of a proposal that would let local governments regulate or ban fracking have won approval to circulate petitions to put it before voters. The Secretary of State’s Office said Thursday supporters have until Aug. 8 to gather more than 98,000 signatures. If they succeed, voters would approve or reject the proposal in the Nov. 8 general ...

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Colorado House advances fracking operations bill

Colorado House advances fracking operations bill

DENVER (AP) — A bill enabling Coloradans to sue oil and gas drilling firms whose fracking operations damage property or harm people has advanced in the Democrat-led state House. Specifically, the bill would hold energy companies liable if their operations cause damaging earthquakes. The bill says plaintiffs could sue without having to prove that a drilling operation directly caused an ...

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Wyoming jobless rate at 4.7 percent in January

Wyoming welcomes you at the state line. (Image: J. Stephen Conn via Flickr)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming’s unemployment rate jumped to 4.7 percent in January as the state continues to see the downturn in the energy extraction industry take a toll on its economy. The Wyoming Department of Workforce Services says January’s jobless rate is significantly higher than the 4.4 percent rate recorded in December and the 3.8 percent rate in January ...

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Wyoming pulls permits for abandoned experimental methane wells

Wyoming pulls permits for abandoned experimental methane wells

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming officials have revoked state permits for hundreds of abandoned coal-bed methane wells that were part of an experiment some hoped would reverse a bust in coal-bed methane. The 413 wells in Campbell County now are a long list of wells the state plans to plug and clean up over several years. The Wyoming Department of ...

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Big Wyoming wind farm clears another government hurdle

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — One of the biggest wind projects under development in North America cleared another regulatory hurdle Wednesday with the release of a federal environmental study looking at the first-phase installation of 500 wind turbines. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s environmental analysis tentatively allows planning for the Chokecherry-Sierra Madre wind project south of Rawlins to continue. The ...

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Wyoming counties, conservation districts sue over sage grouse

A Greater Sage Grouse seen flaunting its tail feathers. (Image: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service via Flickr)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A group of counties and conservation districts in western Wyoming is the latest to sue the federal government over its plans to protect habitat for the greater sage grouse over a vast area of the West. The lawsuit from the Wyoming Coalition of Local Governments joins lawsuits filed by ranchers, mining companies and others who call ...

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Some Colorado officials support rules on natural gas burning

Lawmakers of oil and gas producing states, as well as industry groups, have had mixed reactions to the proposed BLM flaring reduction rules. (Image: Tim Evanson via Flickr)

DENVER (AP) — More than two dozen elected officials from western Colorado cities and counties have endorsed a federal crackdown on oil companies that burn off natural gas on public land. They sent a letter to federal officials Monday saying the practice causes pollution and robs taxpayers of royalties they could have earned on the gas. The Obama administration proposed ...

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Barrasso questions Jewell on raising cost of federal coal

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Senators from Western coal states questioned Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on Tuesday about the need for a three-year moratorium to review the federal coal leasing program, describing it as an assault on the industry. Jewell defended the moratorium as necessary to ensure taxpayers get a fair return on the resource amid low coal prices. Many factors ...

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Wyoming sees oil and gas jobs drop by 5,400 in 2015

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — In what may be the first large-scale energy bust to hit the state in some 30 years, Wyoming’s economy contracted in 2015, losing 6,500 jobs, mostly in the reeling oil and gas industry. However, the current downturn in Wyoming’s energy industry so far has not reached the severity of the bust that hit the state in the ...

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Coal projects advance but won’t be final under moratorium

CASPER, Wyo. — U.S. officials on Wednesday cleared the way for a review of two mining projects that would dig up 644 million tons of coal from public lands, despite a recent government moratorium halting federal coal sales. Wyoming, Montana and U.S. Bureau of Land Management officials approved moving forward with a multiyear evaluation of the projects located next to ...

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