Tuesday, October 11, 2016

AZ Senators Prioritize Mining Interests Over Public Health and Environmental Welfare

The Colorado River supplies water to millions of people yet it is one of America's most endangered river, as discussed here: https://www.americanrivers.org/2015/04/most-endangered-the-colorado-river-in-the-grand-canyon/

The Colorado River is threatened by past, present, and future uranium mining. Energy Fuels Resources is attempting to re-open old uranium mines located adjacent to the Grand Canyon.

There is no uranium shortage. There is no fundamental need to mine more uranium. Many Arizona businesses and environmental groups have opposed the move because the Colorado River is already at great risk, jeopardizing the sustainability of an entire region.

Here is an example of a particular case of uranium contamination of the Colorado River provided by the US Geological Survey http://toxics.usgs.gov/highlights/uranium_cleanup.html

Yet, despite the fact that Colorado River is already contaminated by uranium, Arizona's two senators, Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake, are working to ensure that uranium mining will continue near the banks of the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon region.

AZ's senators sent a letter to US Dept. of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack aimed at disrupting the Obama Administration's efforts to establish a 1.7 million-acre national monument out of the Kaibab National Forest on both sides of Grand Canyon National Park, as reported here:
Brandon Loomis. October 6, 2016. Senators Oppose Grand Canyon-area Monument. The Arizona Republic, 1A, 7A.

[excerpted]: ...State leaders have cautioned against a new monument that would permanently ban uranium mining in the park's watershed. They have argued it would restrict access and management options.
As you can see from this excerpt, AZ's state "leaders" don't even have clearly expressed concerns about the monument. Loss of "access" and "management options" are simply business-speak.

It is clear from this example that AZ's state senators are prioritizing the interest of uranium mining companies over the long-term health and environmental welfare of all those communities in the Southwest that are dependent on Colorado River water.

I've posted previously on the abysmal record of uranium clean-up in the region: http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2016/08/arizona-threatened-by-additional.html

Some powerful business groups are pushing hard to derail the monument:

Koch Brothers Help Fund Anti-Grand Canyon Monument, Pro-Uranium Mining Efforts in Arizona, Tax Documents Show. Phoenix New Times, Monday, April 18, 2016 http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/news/koch-brothers-help-fund-anti-grand-canyon-monument-pro-uranium-mining-efforts-in-arizona-tax-documents-show-8222461

A string of dark-money organizations with ties to the billionaire Koch brothers is helping Arizona politicians and special-interest groups fight the popular Grand Canyon National Heritage Monument proposal, tax documents show.  The money trail begins with a conservative political advocacy organization funded in part by Charles and David Koch and their vast donor network, and ends with a coordinated ground campaign intended to undermine public support for the monument....
We cannot allow their short-sighted profit-driven goals to over-ride protection of our present and future water supply!


  1. and again, and again,

  2. We appear to have landed in a very immature period of history. But then corporations make all the important decisions.

  3. This is a time of extreme neurotoxin and genotoxin accumulation in humans and all living things.


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