skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Monday, February 26, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

ND makes the grade in a national report evaluating public school support; SCOTUS justices express free speech concerns about GOP-backed social media laws; NH "kids on campus" program boosts retention; proposed law bans hemp sales to Hoosiers younger than 21.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

The Supreme Court hears arguments on whether social media can restrict content. Biden advisors point to anti-democracy speeches at CPAC, and the President heads to the US-Mexico border appealing to voters on immigration and border issues.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

David meets Goliath in Idaho pesticide conflict, to win over Gen Z voters, candidates are encouraged to support renewable energy and rural America needs help from Congress to continue affordable internet programs.

Wyoming Could Face Multiple Years of Snowless Winters

play audio
Play

Thursday, December 16, 2021   

CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- Wyoming and other western states are projected to see multiple years in a row without any snow as soon as 35 years out if efforts to rein in fossil-fuel emissions fail to meet global targets, according to a new report.

Almost 75% of water use in western states comes from snowpack.

Matt Rice, southwest regional director for the group American Rivers, said the report should be a red flag for water managers and policymakers to make plans now for a future with a lot less water.

"How do we build resilience in this new more arid future for the West?" Rice questioned. "It's important to make sure that we have the ability to keep water in rivers, to dedicate water to the environment, for fish, for wildlife."

Rising temperatures already have cut snowpack by 20% below 1950s levels, and researchers project by century's end, the vast majority of years -- up to 94% -- will see little or zero snowfall. Loss of snow will not just close ski resorts. Scientists already have linked vanishing snowfall to more frequent and catastrophic wildfires.

The first sector likely to see water restrictions will be agriculture.

Rice said investments are needed to help farmers and ranchers retool for more efficient irrigation and conservation, because no one wants to see a mass dry-up on lands across the West.

"And it's not like when you remove water that land comes back with native grasses and plants and shrubs," Rice cautioned. "This is oftentimes land that has been irrigated for 100-plus years, and to take water off of it, it creates a kind of 'deathscape.'"

Recommendations for adaptation include monitoring weather patterns to avoid flooding by capturing increasingly intense, if less frequent, downpours to refill aquifers. While conflicts over water rights have a long history in western states, Rice noted the issue traditionally has cut across political boundaries.

"As scarcity increases, my fear is that it will digress into a partisan issue, or rural versus urban, when it comes to water," Rice stressed. "These challenges are so significant that we can't afford not to all be in this together."


get more stories like this via email
more stories
Oregon lawmakers have two weeks left in the session to approve funding for the Summer EBT program that helps feed children when school's out. (Lindsay Trapnell/Oregon Food Bank)

Social Issues

play sound

A program that would provide food benefits to kids during the summer still needs funding approval from the Oregon Legislature. The state has …


Social Issues

play sound

Minnesota lawmakers face growing calls this session to boost access to affordable housing and there is a proposal to lend a voice to existing renters …

Health and Wellness

play sound

Legislation in Massachusetts would ban some of the tactics used by "crisis pregnancy centers" to prevent people from having abortions. Many of the …


A groundbreaking study calls for philanthropic foundations to acknowledge past harms and support reparations for Black Americans. (NCRP)

Social Issues

play sound

A new report said philanthropic organizations need to reexamine the source of their wealth, which it asserted often came from systemic racism and …

play sound

Americans' confidence in higher education has plummeted but students and staff at Maine's Colby College hope continued community outreach will help br…

The nonnative quagga mussel has been found in the Snake River. (Cavan/Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

It is National Invasive Species Awareness Week, and plants and critters not native to the Northwest are wreaking havoc on some landscapes, including …

Health and Wellness

play sound

A new program in a Washington public library system is helping people monitor their blood pressure at home. The American Heart Association has …

Environment

play sound

By Kayla Benjamin for The Washington Informer.Broadcast version by Brett Peveto for Maryland News Connection reporting for the Solutions Journalism Ne…

 

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