Letters from the West
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 24, 2014
Imagine the next generation of forest product industries who create and manufacture strong, stiff and lightweight products from cellulose manipulated at the molecular level.
The development of commercial markets for cellulosic nanomaterials, tiny, naturally occurring structural building blocks, hold great promise for many products in electronics, construction, food, energy, health care, automotive, aerospace, and defense. These products could include jet fuel, aerogels, oil drilling additives, paints, coatings, adhesives, cement, food additives, lightweight packaging materials, paper, health care products, tissue scaffolding, lightweight vehicle armor, space technology, and automotive parts.
At a time when 3-D copiers are coming into their own the development of these materials and technologies to produce them cheaply are a great opportunity for a nation filled with trees. It also offers the opportunity to make harvesting smaller, now less commercial trees from our forests that may otherwise burn up as climate change-driven wildfires continue to rage across the American West and around the world.
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 21, 2014
Ken Cole of Boise tells the story of his great-grandfather Walter Cole who accompanied Robert Limbert on his 1921 and 1921 explorations of what is now Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve.
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 17, 2014
Solar power is taking off as Idaho's Public Utilities Commission approves two contracts with Idaho Power and starts the public process on 11 more.
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 14, 2014
The Idaho Public Utilities Commission approved Idaho Power's energy efficiency spending but withheld judgment on whether the utility is doing enough on managing demand.
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 11, 2014
Doug Scott, who worked closely with the late Idaho Sen. Frank Church and Idaho conservationists on campaigns to establish the River of No Return Wilderness in 1980 as well as Hells Canyon, and Gospel Hump will speak Friday at the Hoff Building.
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 10, 2014
Initiatives in Custer and Fremont counties came out overwhelmingly against national monument designation. But it only makes the case to conservationists they have no other choice but the Antiquities Act.
Posted by Rocky Barker on November 7, 2014
As federal wildlife managers decide on whether to place stronger protections on sage grouse Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack honored a group of ranchers and conservationists for protecting a big chuck of habitat.