Best of the West: Dynamic western states, eclipse tourism, solar power boost

The Western Governors' Association keeps you updated on news of the West. Here are the western stories for the week starting May 29, 2017, that you don't want to miss.

Western states lead the country in dynamism, according to a new report by the Economic Innovation Group, a bipartisan public policy research organization.

According to the study, nine of the ten most dynamic U.S. states are in the West: Nevada, Utah, Colorado, North Dakota, Texas, California, Arizona, Idaho and Wyoming all earned top spots.

To determine each state’s economic resilience and innovation, the study analyzed the rate of new business formations and job creation, frequency of turnover, labor force participation and geographic mobility of the work force. Read, download the report.

Power Up: Professors at the University of Wyoming hoped to boost the efficiency of solar cells by 4%, and made a discovery that boosted efficiency by an average of 300%. Learn how their research will be used to improve car batteries and panels, but could have even broader impacts. 

Bumper Tourist Crop: Farmers and ranchers in eastern Idaho are inviting visitors to reserve campsites on their land for the Aug. 21 solar eclipse. The influx of visitors — one county is estimating up to 100,000 tourists — will provide additional revenue to landowners following a disappointing year for crop and cattle revenue.

Roadside Attractions: With the right design, roadsides provide unexpected benefits for butterflies, fish and even bears. Learn what researchers have found out about how food sources and travel corridors can be integrated and managed with highways across the West.

Fierce Faceoff: A bison in Yellowstone National Park was captured on camera defending her newborn calf from a determined coyote. A bison in Yellowstone National Park was captured on camera defending her newborn calf from a determined coyote. A park ranger was nearby to witness the coyote's attempt to separate the two and captured images of the dramatic showdown.


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