Gov. Matt Mead says the mining industry in Wyoming sets the highest standard for reclamation.
The governor spoke Monday at the Wyoming Reclamation and Restoration Symposium and meeting of the American Society of Mining and Reclamation in Laramie.
Mead says the quality of reclamation shown in Wyoming's mining industry sets the global standard.
Mead released a state energy strategy last month that emphasizes the connections between energy production, environmental stewardship and the state's economy. Wyoming is the largest coal-producing state and is also a major producer of natural gas and oil.
Mead said that development of natural resources isn't synonymous with ruin. He says that through proper reclamation, a net increase in overall natural resource conditions is possible and should be expected.
A pathogen that's linked to fatal pneumonia has been detected in the nonnative mountain goats that are expanding into the territory of the Teton bighorn sheep herd in northwest Wyoming.
Wyoming Game and Fish Department biologists tranquilized four mountain goats from the Palisades herd in April and found a bacteria strain in one of the goats.
Game and Fish wildlife biologist Gary Fralick tells the Jackson Hole News & Guide that efforts to monitor the goats will continue in hopes of learning how prevalent the pathogen is in the herd.
Biologists are worried about the bighorn sheep.
The bacteria is thought to be implicated in the deaths of 40 percent of the collared bighorn sheep in a separate Jackson sheep herd over the past year.
Sponsors of an effort to repeal a new state law say Wyoming's referendum process makes it too difficult to succeed in gaining access to the statewide ballot.
Jennifer Young, of Torrington, was among those who submitted petition signatures this week in hopes of forcing a statewide vote on Wyoming's new law redefining the state superintendent of public instruction's powers and duties.
Young says the state's referendum process is designed for such efforts to fail.
Dan Neal of the Equality State Policy Center in Casper says Wyoming is one of the most difficult states for an initiative or referendum to succeed.
State Republican Sen. Cale Case, of Lander, says Wyoming's process needs to be less restrictive but not too easy.
He suggested allowing online signature gathering that can be verified.
The State Board of Education has identified six semifinalists for the position of director of the Wyoming Department of Education and plans to interview them in closed sessions Friday and Saturday.
The board said Wednesday that the candidates' names won't be released until they have confirmed their availability for face-to-face interviews.
The candidates each are being asked to also participate in 30-minute, public question-and-answer sessions Friday and Saturday.
The board plans to recommend three candidates to Gov. Matt Mead, who will appoint the director.
A statewide elected superintendent once led the Department of Education, but the Legislature and Mead changed that with a new law that says a director appointed by the governor will now lead it.
The semifinalists were chosen from a pool of 84 applicants.