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John Freemuth

By: Cienna Madrid   Published 5:25 pm / May 31, 2018

Portrait of John Freemuth

John Freemuth

Professor, Executive Director of the Andrus Center for Public Policy
Public Policy and Administration
School of Public Service

John Freemuth recently published an article in The Conversation titled “The sage grouse isn’t just a bird – it’s a proxy for control of Western lands.”

The piece begins:

“The Trump administration is clashing with conservation groups and others over protection for the greater sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), a bird widely known for its dramatic mating displays. The grouse is found across sagebrush country from the Rocky Mountains on the east to the Sierra and Cascade mountain ranges on the west.

This region also contains significant oil and gas deposits. The Trump administration is revising an elaborate plan developed under the Obama administration that sought to steer energy development away from sage grouse habitat. Conservation groups are suing in response, arguing that this shift and accelerated oil and gas leasing threaten sage grouse and violate several key environmental laws.

This battle is the latest skirmish in a continuing narrative over management of Western public lands …”

Within a day of publication, the article was reprinted in The New Republic,, Scientific American and U.S. News and World Report, among others. This is Freemuth’s seventh piece published with The Conversation, which have tallied 120,000-plus reads.