In one of the biggest blows to the environment since President Obama took office, the Bureau of Land Management just authorized new uranium exploration permits in land around the Grand Canyon. Bush-era Interior Secretary Dick Kempthorne overrode an emergency Congressional resolution attempting to stop these uranium permits last year, and the BLM’s current action signifies that new Interior Secretary Ken Salazar may be following suit.
According to documents (pdf) released yesterday by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Grand Canyon Trust, BLM on April 27 authorized Quaterra Alaska Inc. to conduct eight uranium mine exploration operations at five separate projects north of Grand Canyon National Park and west of the Kaibab Plateau.
“Our understanding is that exploration can begin immediately,” said Taylor McKinnon, director of CBD’s public lands program.
We can’t let this uranium mining destroy the Grand Canyon! The mining would threaten the drinking water for 30 million people living in the western United States and could devastate tourism, which generates more than half a billion dollars for the economy.
You can do something about it; Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Arizona) introduced the Grand Canyon Watersheds Protection Act, which would ban mining near the precious park. Urge your Representative to take action today, before the park and its surrounding water is contaminated by uranium mining!