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UW Haub School to Boost Efforts to Sustain Landscapes in Wyoming and the West

October 31, 2013
Rainbow over wilderness area
The Walton Family Foundation gift will support efforts to sustain landscapes in Wyoming and the Rocky Mountain West. (UW Photo)

The University of Wyoming Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources is poised to tackle some of the West’s toughest natural resource challenges.

A $500,000 gift from the Walton Family Foundation will support efforts over the next two to four years to sustain landscapes in Wyoming and the Rocky Mountain West. This will include research, analysis and educational programs to inform sustainable management of open spaces, wildlife habitat, agriculture, water, human communities, energy resources and more.

“The mission of the University of Wyoming, a land-grant institution, is to serve its state and its nation,” says UW President Bob Sternberg. “That’s why the University of Wyoming is so grateful for the Walton Family Foundation gift, which is so appropriate and so timely. It will help the UW Haub School serve the public in sustainability and natural resource stewardship; to help provide the next generations of ethical environmental and natural resource leaders; and to partner with organizations and individuals to better serve the interests of the great state of Wyoming.”

Haub School projects funded by the gift will fall under the following initiatives:

-- The Wyoming Open Spaces Initiative, a long-term publication series that provides information on effective maintenance of open spaces and offers tools for habitat and community sustainability;

-- The Energy Mitigation Research and Outreach Initiative, which studies and synthesizes information on practices to ameliorate the consequences of landscape-scale energy development to wildlife;

-- The Western Water Initiative, an effort that will integrate the science of water availability, current and potential water policy, and societal responses and adaptation to drought to ensure that water resources are available into the future;

-- Western Confluence magazine, a new publication that will explore collaborative interdisciplinary approaches to solving difficult environmental and natural resource challenges in the western U.S.;

-- Undergraduate and graduate student field experiences across the state of Wyoming, as well as international hands-on experiences for students to learn approaches to solving natural resource challenges.

“This gift will make a tremendous difference to our ability to understand and resolve complex environment and natural resources issues,” says Indy Burke, director of the Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources. “These funds will bolster some of our most important projects, and allow us to expand our work to reach more people who are building solutions to natural resource challenges on the ground.”

The Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources advances the understanding and resolution of complex environmental and natural resource challenges. It offers interdisciplinary undergraduate and graduate degrees in environment and natural resources at UW. Additionally, the Haub School is home to the Ruckelshaus Institute, which supports stakeholder-driven solutions to environmental challenges by communicating relevant research and promoting collaborative decision making. It also is home to the Biodiversity Institute, which promotes research, education and appreciation about living organisms.

For more information about the Haub School, visit or contact Emilene Ostlind, communications coordinator, at (307) 766-2604 or

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
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