Nevada’s Natural Resources acting director on collaboration, drought, smart-from-the-start planning
With hundreds of full-time employees, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is one of the state’s largest agencies, responsible for a wide array of activities, from overseeing state parks and wildland fire crews to regulating industrial pollution and managing water rights. Earlier this month, the agency got a new leader. Gov. Steve Sisolak appointed Jim Lawrence, who has worked at the agency since 1998, to serve as the acting director. … The leadership change comes at a time when the state — and the region — face a number of ongoing interconnected environmental issues, including a prolonged drought that has strained water supplies, pressures on public land, increasingly risky wildfire behavior and extreme heat.