Please sign on to the letter to save the Grand Canyon from uranium mining. Uranium mining rips up huge tracts of land to extract radioactive material for use in nuclear weapons and nuclear power plants.1 For the past two years, the Grand Canyon has been protected from these ravages. But now, the temporary mining moratorium is set to expire. The Grand Canyon’s fragile ecosystem, stunning beauty, and vital water supply are threatened by 1,100 new mining claims that have been filed within five miles of this priceless “crown jewel.” The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is considering a 20-year ban on mining to protect the Grand Canyon’s entire one-million acre watershed. But there are other proposals on the table, and industry lobbyists are encouraging BLM to open the floodgates for the uranium mining rush. It’s essential that we urge the BLM to protect the Grand Canyon. Tell the Bureau of Land Management: Ban uranium mining at the Grand Canyon. Submit a public comment now. The high price of uranium makes its extraction extremely lucrative for mining companies, but shockingly, the practice is regulated by the antiquated 1872 Mining Law which has no environmental standards to limit the devastation and radioactive damage that results to wildlife, soil, ground and surface water. In fact, the law actually makes exploitative mining a priority over all other uses of public lands. The legacy of mining in the Grand Canyon and has already wrought lasting damage to surrounding areas and tribal communities, who have banned mining on all their lands.
If mining companies are allowed to move ahead with their new claims, the damage to the local wildlands and habitat would be extreme. And with the huge risk that polluted water will run into the Colorado river — which supplies water to cities including Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix and Tucson — this mining literally poses a risk to the health of nearly 30 million people.2
Tell BLM: Ban uranium mining at the Grand Canyon. Submit a public comment now.
It’s tragic that, as we observe the 25th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster this week, and as the Fukushima disaster continues to unfold in Japan, the thirst for nuclear energy and power would now threaten one of our most precious places, and millions of people who depend on it.
The two year ban came as a result of intense public pressure to stop dangerous uranium mining. That’s what we need to help show again. Please submit a public comment now.
1. “Uranium Mining 101,” EarthWorks Action
2. The Grand Canyon Uranium Rush,” New York Times, March 8, 2011