Southwest (AZ NM OK TX)

Quagga Mussels — Worse Than Zebra Mussels and Maybe Headed Your Way

An invasive species of mussel — no, not zebra mussels, but quagga mussels — are wreaking havoc not just in the Great Lakes, but have now spread through the Mississippi and Colorado basins, as far west as Lake Mead. The latest TipSheet runs down the extent of the problem, how quaggas may be even worse than zebra mussels, and ideas for reporting on your local waterways.

SEJ Publication Types: 
March 25, 2021

Building Climate Reporting Confidence: The South

Covering Climate Now, Climate Matters in the Newsroom and Southerly present experienced journalists, 2:30-4:00pm ET, sharing how they got up to speed on the climate issue, challenges they've faced in reporting and ideas on how to tell localized, human-centered stories to engage audiences. Includes Q&A.


Last Texas Utility Commissioner Resigns After Leaked Call Pledging Profits

"The last standing member of Texas’s Public Utility Commission handed in his resignation on Tuesday following a report that he assured out-of-state investors who made big profits from last month’s blackouts that he was working to make sure they could keep their money."

Source: Earther, 03/18/2021

"Saving The West’s Most Iconic Cactus From Climate Change"

"A warming world means an invasive grass is threatening the famous saguaro
Cactuses cover a hillside in Saguaro National Park in Arizona."

"TUCSON — The giant saguaro, an icon of the American West, is beloved in this state. Arms raised in a perpetual “hello there,” the saguaro covers the desert wilderness and thrives in cities. Its silhouette appears in fine art and on restaurant walls; businesses and schools carry its name. Arizona state law protects the plant, and it is revered by the native Tohono O’odham tribe.

Source: Washington Post, 03/11/2021

Oil’s Fight to Roll Back Tribal Sovereignty After Supreme Court Decision

"Gov. Kevin Stitt’s commission to sort out Oklahoma’s future is stacked with oil and gas insiders — and has no Indigenous voices."

Source: The Intercept, 03/11/2021

Texas PUC Chair Resigns After Criticism Over Management Of Power Outages

"The chairwoman of the Public Utility Commission of Texas, the agency that regulates the state’s electric, telecommunication, and water and sewer utilities, resigned Monday, according to a resignation letter provided to the Texas Tribune."

Source: Texas Tribune, 03/02/2021

Feds Withdraw Environmental Impact Statement, Delaying Oak Flat Land Swap

"The U.S. Forest Service has withdrawn the final environmental impact statement for a huge copper mine near Superior, temporarily halting a land swap that would have given the mine's owners title to a parcel deemed sacred by many Apaches and other Southwestern tribes."

Source: Arizona Republic, 03/02/2021

Five ERCOT Board Members Who Live Outside of Texas Resign After Outage

"Five board members of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas — the entity that manages and operates the electricity grid that covers much of Texas — will resign on Wednesday, according to a notice to the Public Utility Commission. A sixth has withdrawn his application to the board. All six live outside of Texas."

Source: Texas Tribune, 02/24/2021

How Texas Froze: Neglect Of Grid And Climate Warnings Set The Stage

"State officials’ repeated failure to act on deeply researched advice for averting grid catastrophes paralleled Texas’ years-long non-response to experts’ warnings about the dangers of climate change."

Source: Inside Climate News, 02/24/2021


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