Author

Jacob Fischler

Jacob Fischler

Jacob Fischler is a national correspondent for States Newsroom, a network of state-based nonprofit news outlets that includes Kansas Reflector.

Stone-Manning nomination set to advance to U.S. Senate after emotions run high at committee vote

By: - July 22, 2021

In a contentious meeting that distilled a weeks-long fight, the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee deadlocked 10-10 along party lines Thursday on approving Tracy Stone-Manning’s nomination as head of the Bureau of Land Management. That means an extra procedural vote will be forced before the full U.S. Senate takes up the nomination of […]

Democrats unite around ‘climate corps’ that could employ youths, prevent fires

By: - July 20, 2021

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer pledged on Tuesday to include a Civilian Climate Corps in a $3.5 trillion infrastructure bill later this year, as a broad swath of Democrats rallied around a framework of employing thousands of young people to do conservation work. Schumer, D-N.Y., appeared with a handful of congressional Democrats, led by […]

Conflicting versions of tree-spiking case overshadow Stone-Manning nomination

By: - July 16, 2021

Tracy Stone-Manning and a former federal investigator during the past few days shared widely varying accounts of her involvement in a 1989 tree-spiking in an Idaho national forest, as the fight over the Montanan’s nomination to lead the U.S. Bureau of Land Management escalated. Stone-Manning’s confirmation remains stuck in a divided U.S. Senate Energy & […]

Biden’s public lands pick nears crucial vote in growing Senate confirmation fight

By: - July 10, 2021

Republican senators during the past few weeks led sustained attacks on President Joe Biden’s choice to head up the Bureau of Land Management, zeroing in on the Montanan’s Twitter feed, her graduate thesis that included a mock-up for an advertisement for population control and her ties to a 1989 tree-spiking incident. But Tracy Stone-Manning’s confirmation […]

U.S. House panel probes slow cleanup of ‘exploited’ coal mining sites

By: - June 19, 2021

A U.S. House Natural Resources subcommittee examined the cleanup needs for regions transitioning away from coal production Tuesday, with witnesses representing coal workers and American Indian communities saying energy companies should be responsible for returning the land to its pre-mining state. Much of the conversation at the Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee hearing centered on […]

Federal judge halts Biden pause on new oil and gas leases across the U.S.

By: - June 16, 2021

A federal judge in Louisiana has ordered the Biden administration to restart regular sales of oil and gas leases, forcing the administration to prematurely abandon a central piece of its climate change agenda.  In a preliminary ruling issued Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty granted the request of Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry and 12 […]

Biden’s public lands pick wins backing by environmental advocates ahead of hearing

By: - June 7, 2021

Environmental groups are lining up behind President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Bureau of Land Management ahead of her Tuesday confirmation hearing. More than 100 organizations wrote to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, (D-N.Y.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Monday asking that the Senate confirm Tracy Stone-Manning, a Montanan who led conservation and […]

National parks struggling with maintenance would get a boost under Biden budget request

By: - June 3, 2021

Basic needs at the largest U.S. national parks top the Biden administration’s first proposed lists of projects to receive funding through public lands trust funds, showing how much maintenance is needed even as parks brace for record numbers of visitors this summer. The projects likely wouldn’t be visible to the usual tourist, but they are […]

Heading for a national park? The ‘biggest season in the history of the Park Service’ predicted

By: - May 30, 2021

Leaders of a U.S. Senate panel extolled national parks for providing a respite during the COVID-19 pandemic, but cautioned that enthusiasm for outdoors recreation will create its own problems in this summer’s tourism wave. Sen. Angus King, a Maine independent and the chairman of a subcommittee that oversees the U.S. National Park Service, said this […]

How a plan to boost Kansas-Nebraska tourism got wrapped up in fears of a 30×30 ‘land-grab’

By: - May 16, 2021

It started as a research project. University of Nebraska landscape architecture professor Kim Wilson asked her students in 2016 to brainstorm a way to increase tourism in Red Cloud, Nebraska, the childhood home of renowned writer Willa Cather, just north of the Kansas border. The class found that more than 255 historic sites dot the […]

Biden’s ‘30 by 30’ conservation plan urges collaboration with private landowners

By: - May 11, 2021

The Biden administration plans to broadly define conservation and encourage private landowners to adopt sustainable practices to meet a goal of protecting 30 percent of the land and water in the U.S. by 2030, according to a multi-agency report published last week. The recommendations are short of the most aggressive federal directives congressional Republicans feared […]

Migratory bird protections to be permanently restored by Biden administration

By: - May 8, 2021

The Interior Department plans to officially revoke a Trump-era rule that loosened enforcement of a longstanding law to protect migratory birds, the department said Thursday. The rule put in place by former Interior Secretary David Bernhardt barred government authorities from holding companies liable for environmental violations leading to the deaths of birds protected under the […]