Valley homeowners take advantage of xeriscape incentives

MESA – Mesa and Chandler offer xeriscape incentives for homeowners to convert their grass lawns to more desert-friendly landscaping.

This yard in Mesa was converted to desert landscaping under the city’s Grass-to-Xeriscape incentive program. Photo taken Sept. 7, 2022. (Photo by Samantha Chow/Cronkite News)

How one Wickenburg cattle ranch puts sustainability at its core

WICKENBURG, Ariz. – Date Creek Ranch in Wickenburg is working to demonstrate how cattle ranching can benefit the environment.

Date Creek Ranch is a sustainable farming community that relies on solar energy to power the ranch. Photo taken on Sept. 27, 2022. (Photo by Sophie Oppfelt/Cronkite News)

Arizona nonprofit raises funds to help Puerto Ricans in Hurricane Fiona aftermath

PHOENIX – Members of the Puerto Rican Center of Arizona have held six events across metro Phoenix to raise money for those affected by Hurricane Fiona, which struck Puerto Rico in September.


Move ’em out! Historic Old Tucson film studio has reopened after two years

TUCSON – Two years after COVID-19 shut it down, Old Tucson reopened in early October under new management. Hollywood filmed Westerns at the site for decades, and now visitors again can soak up some of that history.


Arizona students come to lobby as courts, Congress, fight over Oak Flat

WASHINGTON - A group of Arizona high school students and alumni was in Washington this week to lobby for a bill that would block development of a copper mine at Oak Flat, land that is sacred to the San Carlos Apache.


After long fight, tribal water bills get primary OK; still far from final

WASHINGTON - A trio of bills affecting water rights and infrastructure for Arizona tribes took a step closer to becoming law Wednesday, a move one official said his tribe has been waiting for since being forced onto the reservation.


As world leaders meet to discuss climate change, action plans inch forward in Arizona

PHOENIX – As world leaders meet in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, to discuss global climate change at COP27, in Arizona initiatives are taking place to help deal with adaptation, heat resiliency and drought.


Trash talk: Los Angeles is losing its battle with litter, and neighborhoods are stepping up

LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles residents are fed up with trash they have decided to take matters into their own hands and create their own trash clubs, the city of Los Angeles, is stymied over the problem, and is heavily losing the fight against trash.

A man crushes cans and containers that can be cashed in at recycling centers. Scavengers go through some of the garbage left curbside Los Angeles. The city faces big problems of trash left on streets. (Photo by Emeril Gordon/Cronkite News)

Updated recovery plan for Mexican wolves aims to reduce human-caused deaths

PHOENIX – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s final revision of its recovery plan for Mexican wolves adds additional guidance for human-caused deaths, education and livestock conflict-avoidance measures. The update, released in early October, comes after a court ruling.


Piggin’ out for the planet: Halloween pumpkins wind up in livestock, not landfills

Pumpkin drives are becoming a popular way to give your Halloween pumpkins a second purpose while keeping them out of landfills, where they rot, generating greenhouse gasses that contribute to climate change. Better Piggies Rescue and Rover Elementary School are among the groups hosting donation drives to collect pumpkins to feed them to animals or to be composted.


Surging numbers: Driving an electric vehicle doesn’t need to cause range anxiety

SANTA MONICA, Calif. – A federal law provides grants to states that draft plans to expand electric-vehicle charging stations. Arizona will receive $76.5 million over three years to boost its EV infrastructure along interstate highways.


Slow, steady and high tech: Study using GPS to track Sonoran desert tortoises

SCOTTSDALE – The McDowell Sonoran Conservancy wants to learn more about how the Sonoran desert tortoise interacts with urban development and how they move through the desert. It's using telemetry and GPS to track 22 tortoises in the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve.