Jim Malewitz

Jim Malewitz covers energy for the Tribune. Before arriving, he spent two years covering energy and environmental issues for Stateline, a nonprofit news service in Washington, D.C., where his work also appeared in The Washington Post and Chicago Tribune, among other newspapers. A native of Michigan, Jim has an undergraduate degree from Grinnell College in Iowa, where he played varsity baseball. He also holds a master’s from the University of Iowa, where he helped launch the nonprofit Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism. Jim loves tacos and barbecue, making him a good match for Austin’s eating scene. However, he remains on the lookout for great waffles.

Recent Contributions

AG Seeks Details on Federal Plans for Land by Red River

A view of the Red River looking east, north of Bonham, Texas. Texas is to the right, and Oklahoma is on the left. The border between the two states runs along the south (right) bank of the river.
A view of the Red River looking east, north of Bonham, Texas. Texas is to the right, and Oklahoma is on the left. The border between the two states runs along the south (right) bank of the river.

Texas officials are seeking more information on the federal government's plans to potentially take control of 90,000 acres of land long managed by North Texans. 

In Power Line Dispute, Rancher Questions Wiggle Room

Johnny Vinson stands on the part of his Wise County, Texas ranch where Oncor built a power line  through his property. Vinson says the power company didn't build the line where they said they would.
Johnny Vinson stands on the part of his Wise County, Texas ranch where Oncor built a power line through his property. Vinson says the power company didn't build the line where they said they would.

After landowners sign off on power line routes, can transmission companies install them somewhere else? The Public Utility Commission is set to consider a rancher’s complaint.

 

Court Thwarts Sierra Club's Hazardous Waste Challenge

John Ward, operations project task manager at Waste Control Specialists' facility near Andrews, Texas, walks over to inspect concrete canisters that will house drums of nuclear waste.
John Ward, operations project task manager at Waste Control Specialists' facility near Andrews, Texas, walks over to inspect concrete canisters that will house drums of nuclear waste.

UPDATED: A state appeals court has thwarted the second of two challenges to a hazardous and low-level radioactive waste disposal site in West Texas in rulings that signal growing difficulties for those trying to scrutinize the decisions of Texas' environmental regulators.

 

Old Drilling Logs Help Researchers Map Brackish Water

Daniel Ortuño, who manages the 1.5 million drilling records stored at the University of Texas at Austin's Bureau of Economic Geology, examines well data in what he calls the "spooky room," home to thousands of records that he has not yet organized. State water researchers are using information from some logs to map potential water sources.
Daniel Ortuño, who manages the 1.5 million drilling records stored at the University of Texas at Austin's Bureau of Economic Geology, examines well data in what he calls the "spooky room," home to thousands of records that he has not yet organized. State water researchers are using information from some logs to map potential water sources.

As drought grips most of Texas, researchers are combing the state's 1.5 million drilling records to map brackish water in the state's 30 aquifers — hidden resources that could help quench the state’s long-term thirst.

Los Alamos Waste Arrives in West Texas

An overhead view in 2012 of Waste Control Specialists' low-level radioactive waste storage facilities near Andrews, Texas. The site is poised to get 420 truckloads of waste from New Mexico.
An overhead view in 2012 of Waste Control Specialists' low-level radioactive waste storage facilities near Andrews, Texas. The site is poised to get 420 truckloads of waste from New Mexico.

UPDATED: A radioactive waste site in West Texas has received its first truckload of transuranic waste from the federal government’s nuclear weapons program, following wildfires and a radiation leak in New Mexico.