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Population growth and industrial development have put the wide-open spaces and natural resources that define the West under immense stress. Vested interests clash and come to terms over embattled resources such as water, minerals, and even open space. The federal government controls 40 to 80 percent of the land base in many western states; its sway over the futures of the West's communities and environment has prompted the development of unique policies and politics in the West. This thoroughly revised and updated edition offers a comprehensive and current survey. Contributors address the policy process as it affects western states, how bureaucracy and politics shape environmental dialogues in the West, how western states innovate environmental policies independently of Washington, and how and when science is involved (or ignored) in management of the West's federal lands. Experts in individual resource areas explore multifaceted issues such as the politics of dam removal and restoration, wildlife resource concerns, suburban sprawl and smart growth, the management of hard-rock mining, and the allocation of the West's tightly limited water resources.