Monday: UN-Glacier Visit, Whitefish River Cleanup, PSC Frustration

By Beacon Staff

Good morning; on the Beacon today, two scientists from the United Nations are scheduled to visit Glacier National Park this week to look at the potential impacts of coal mining and natural gas development across the Canadian border in British Columbia. A proposed travel and recreation plan for a section of the Kootenai National Forest has some mountain bikers in northwest Montana concerned that they could lose access to trails they have ridden for years. Tenant farmers are in an awkward position when the landowners eventually push for uses for their property that conflict with agriculture. Montana’s school enrollment numbers have been in decline since the 1994-95 school year, but state officials are predicting increases by 2013 based on birth rates. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says efforts to remove contaminated sediment from the Whitefish River will begin this week. This is the last weekend that the entire Going to the Sun Road will be open in Glacier National Park. Rainey Lake is a relatively small lake within Lolo National Forest offering six primitive tent campsites with spectacular views of the Swan Range.

Sen. Jon Tester has sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano asking for more transparency about the millions of dollars projected to be spent in Montana upgrading security checkpoints along the Canadian border. Bitterroot Valley residents upset over how the Kootenai Creek fire has been managed blasted U.S. Forest Service officials at a public meeting over the weekend. And Lee’s Mike Dennison details how some small renewable energy developers are looking to other states out of frustration with Montana’s Public Service Commission.