Local News

Earth Notes: The Southwest’s Nutritional Wonder Tree

Nov 25, 2015

It's tough, spare, and spiny, but the common mesquite tree is a nutritional wonder of the Southwest. 

Cronkite News

Most voting machines are only designed to last about a decade. A new study shows many of the machines in use across the U.S. are close to that age, and that could increase the chances of voting irregularities for the 2016 election cycle. Arizona Public Radio’s Justin Regan reports. 

Mark Rozema

Author Mark Rozema grew up in Flagstaff, but has lived all over the West working as a photographer, fisherman, firefighter and teacher. His first book is called “Road Trip.” It’s a collection of personal essays that chronicle his travels and examine how the natural world molds our relationships. Mary Sojourner interviewed Rozema for this month’s Southwest Book Review.

Deborah Lee Soltesz/Coconino National Forest/USFS

Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake have called on the U.S. Forest Service to increase the scale and speed of large forest-thinning projects in the state. They say more work is needed to protect the forests from catastrophic wildfire. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

Thomas G. Whitham

Northern Arizona University’s Southwest Experimental Garden Array will test out the idea of “prestoration”—a kind of ecological restoration that anticipates the expected future climate.

The name is practically as long as the animal itself: the “chisel-toothed kangaroo rat.” It lives in desert landscapes from Oregon and California through Utah and into northwest Arizona. 

Charlie Leight/The Arizona Republic

The Antiquities Act gives the President of the United States power to declare national monuments. A bill sponsored by Republican Arizona Congressman Paul Gosar wants to limit that presidential authority, which has been in place for more than 100 years. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

Ross D. Franklin/AP

Governor Doug Ducey has called for a halt in the federal government’s resettlement of refugees in Arizona. The governor says security concerns prompted the move following last week’s deadly terror attacks in Paris. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

Melissa Sevigny

Nuclear power has gained more attention as a clean energy source. The raw material needed to make that power is uranium; and the highest-grade uranium deposits in the nation are near the Grand Canyon. The federal government has halted new uranium mining in the region, but old mines can still reopen.


A piece of space junk will fall to Earth over the Indian Ocean late tonight. Arizona astronomers discovered the object and plan to track its fiery descent.