Energy and Environment

Environmental and energy related news

Julia Ritchey

  A petition to ban the controversial practice of coyote hunting contests in Nevada failed again before the state’s Board of Wildlife Commissioners on Friday. Reno Public Radio’s Julia Ritchey was there and has more.

The commission voted 5-2 to deny the petition after nearly three hours of emotional testimony from both sides of the issue.

Chris Vega /

After some heated back and forth, a local developer with properties near Virginia Lake is once again offering the City of Reno a hefty donation to help clean up that water, which has been plagued with issues for decades. Reno Public Radio’s Michelle Bliss takes us through the play-by-play of what's been happening. 

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe

Mt. Rose ski area is armed with a slew of snow-makers, and as long as Mother Nature cooperates with cold, dry conditions, the resort will open this week. Reno Public Radio's Michelle Bliss has the details.

With advertising that reads El Nino Is Coming...Get Your Season Pass Today the Mount Rose ski area is banking on a better winter, finally. 

Courtesy of Firelizard5, Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

  A scathing federal report released Friday found that the Bureau of Land Management knowingly sold thousands of wild horses for slaughter. Reno Public Radio’s Julia Ritchey reports.

The BLM, which is charged with protecting wild horses actually sold more than 1,700 of them to a Colorado rancher who illegally sent them to slaughterhouses in Mexico.

That’s according to a new report.

Over the course of four years, from 2008-2012, the rancher, Tom Davis, purchased loads of horses for $10 each and resold them for meat.

Earlier this month we ran a feature on antibiotics in meat and how they’re linked to superbugs in humans. Now, Reno Public Radio’s Amy Westervelt reports that the major restaurant chain Subway will actually be eliminating all antibiotics from its menu.

Nevada has more large nail salons than any other state, but new research has found a troubling health issue lurking at them. 

A study published this week in the journal Environmental International found high levels of the chemical Diphenyl phosphate, or DPHP, in women who had just painted their nails. DPHP is created when the body metabolizes Triphenyl phosphate (TPHP), a common component of flame retardants. 

  Coyote hunting competitions are a regular occurrence in many parts of rural Nevada, but the controversial practice has animal rights activists renewing efforts to ban them. Reno Public Radio's Julia Ritchey reports.

A flyer for a coyote derby in Austin, Nevada, this weekend advertises prizes and awards for hunters grouped into two- and three-person teams.

Phil Marshall is one of the organizers of the event. He says there are two benefits; the first is driving economic activity to a remote part of the state.

The Nature Conservancy

Independence Lake is just north of Truckee but is perhaps one of the last hidden gems of the Sierra. It’s pristine, quiet, and it serves as Reno’s last resort water supply—all reasons why more than twenty agencies are partnering to preserve it. For our series Beyond Tahoe: Exploring Our Waterways, KUNR News Director Michelle Bliss heads to this small, relatively unknown, lake to learn more.

In order to set foot on the rocky, seemingly untouched shore of Independence Lake, it’s recommended that you have 4-wheel drive. 

Michelle Bliss

The CDC has been sounding the alarm about the link between antibiotics in meat and antibiotic resistance in humans, but a new report finds that antibiotic-free options are still relatively scarce. Reno Public Radio’s Amy Westervelt talked to one Nevada rancher in Fallon who's made the switch.

"See how there's so much less fiber in this year's cow pie?"

Julia Ritchey

After four years of drought, the state wants to restrict the amount of groundwater being pumped for agriculture in the Smith and Mason valleys.  Reno Public Radio’s Julia Ritchey reports.

Farmers have already voluntarily cut back on their use of these supplemental wells, which they've relied more heavily on due to lack of surface water from the parched Walker River.

But Jason King, the state engineer, says it isn't enough in these dry conditions.