Support Georgina Lightning - Uranium Mining In Grand Canyon And Churchrock
Please help support native actor, writer, and director Georgina Lightning and her film "Older Than America", in her efforts to win the Whitehouse Project EPIC “Emerging Artist” Award. By passing this information to your contacts you can help her win!
Vote here! http://www.thewhitehouseproject.org/epic/emerging_artist.php
Apologies that our instructions weren’t clear enough! To vote:
Click on this link here: http://www.thewhitehouseproject.org/epic/emerging_artist.php
A page should come up in your browser with the main content looking like this:
On the column on the right side of the video that automatically plays in the center, there is a list of the Nominated films and corresponding directors - Georgina’s should be the second from the bottom.
Click the circle on the left side of her name, it should show a little grey dot when it’s selected properly
Click vote at the bottom, and it should notify you that you’ve voted!
Please don’t hesitate to contact me again if you still have problems, and thank you for posting our information on your website – we greatly appreciate it!
We have until this Sunday at 11:59 pm EST to reach our goal of 10,000 votes!
Lightning’s contemporary, multiple award-winning drama "Older than America" is the story of a woman’s haunting vision revealing a priest’s plot to silence her mother from speaking about the atrocities that occurred at her Native American boarding school. It is a groundbreaking film that is ultimately about the triumph of the human spirit, and the true resiliency of a people.
Winning the “Emerging Artist” Award is the opportunity to have Lightning’s work recognized for the achievement that it is, and will make history by making her the first Native American as well as the first woman honored with this award.
Thank you for your support!
CANADIAN URANIUM COMPANY MINES GRAND CANYON'S NORTH RIM
Arizona Daily Sun
In defiance of legal challenges and a U.S. Government moratorium, Canadian company Denison Mines has started mining uranium on the north rim of the Grand Canyon. According to the Arizona Daily Sun the mine has been operating since December 2009. Denison plans on extracting 335 tons of uranium ore per day out of the “Arizona 1 Mine”, which is set to operate four days per week.
The hazardous ore will be hauled by truck more than 300 miles through towns and communities to the company’s White Mesa mill located near Blanding, Utah. After being pressured by environmental groups, U.S. Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar initially called for a two-year moratorium on new mining claims in a buffer zone of 1million acres around Grand Canyon National Park, but the moratorium doesn’t include existing claims such as Denison’s.
The moratorium also doesn’t address mining claims outside of the buffer zone. Obama Approves New Nuclear Reactors and Increased Need for Uranium Currently there are 104 nuclear reactors in the United States which supply 20% of the U.S.’s electricity. In January the Obama administration approved a $54 billion dollar taxpayer loan in a guarantee program for new nuclear reactor construction, three times what Bush previously promised in 2005.
The Colorado River, Water & Uranium's Deadly Legacy Uranium is a known cause of cancers, organ damage, miscarriages & birth defects. Drilling for the radioactive material has been found to contaminate underground aquifers that drain into the Colorado River, and sacred springs that have sustained Indigenous Peoples in the region. In addition, surface water can flow into drill holes and mine shafts which can also poison underground water sources.
Emerging in the Rocky Mountains in North Central Colorado and winding 1,450 miles to the Gulf of California, the Colorado River is held sacred by more than 34 Indigenous Nations. The Colorado also provides drinking water for up to 27 million people in seven states throughout the Southwest.
JUDGE: NATURAL OR NOT, RADIATION WILL EXCEED HEALTH STANDARD
By Kathy Helms
CHURCHROCK – For 30 years, United Nuclear Corp. mined Section 17 in Churchrock. When it abandoned the mine, it failed to undertake a basic responsibility: cleaning up after itself, according to 10th Circuit Court Judge Carlos F. Lucero.
Now, with approval from the Court of Appeals in Denver, Uranium Resources Inc., through its subsidiary Hydro Resources Inc., plans to mine the same property using in situ leach mining. The court issued a 2-1 opinion Monday, upholding the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's licensing of the project, with Lucero dissenting.
“UNC left behind mining spoil that continuously emits gamma radiation and radon. ... HRI plans to mine the site, which will result in total radiation levels nine to 15 times the permitted regulatory limit,” he said.
In granting the license the NRC considered only potential radiation “directly linked to licensed activity,” and the majority opinion of the court concurred. They did not include radiation being emitted from the existing waste, in combination with radiation to be emitted in the future from HRI's operations. Lucero believes this is a mistake.
Chris Shuey of Southwest Research Information Center of Albuquerque, plaintiff in the case along with Eastern Navajo Diné Against Uranium Mining and two local residents, also disagreed with the NRC's interpretation.
“When the regulations say you have to limit doses to people outside your fence line to less than 100 millirems per year, and you've got material on the outside of that fence line that already exceeds that dose, you have one of two choices: You either can't give them a license, or you make them clean it up.”
In addition, there is dispute with federal regulators over what is considered “background radiation.” The regulations state that background is “naturally occurring radioactive material,” or “NORM.”
Neither the NRC nor the Atomic Energy Act define NORM, Lucero said, yet in this case, the NRC concluded that “naturally occurring” includes radioactive material that had been “technologically enhanced.” When a term is not defined by the relevant statute or regulation, it is interpreted based on its common meaning, he said, and turned to Webster's Dictionary.
“Naturally” means “according to or by the operation of the laws of nature,” Lucero wrote. “Thus, 'naturally occurring radioactive material' is radioactive material that occurs according to or by the operation of the laws of nature. It does not include radioactive materials that are no longer in their natural state as a result of human activities.”
Because the NRC granted HRI’s license using interpretations of its regulations that are inconsistent with the regulations themselves, he said, the licensing of HRI should be remanded to the NRC for reconsideration.
“They're talking about material that's on Section 17 that's NORM material,” said Rick Van Horn, senior vice president of operations for URI. “NRC doesn't have anything to do with NORM material. It's not part of the NRC licensing process.”
Shuey said HRI acquired the surface estate from UNC, “knowing full-well what was there and made representation they were going to clean it up – and then they rely upon NRC to make a misinterpretation of its own regulations.”
“It's not background because humans put it there!” he said. “At what point can anybody on Navajo have any faith in the federal government that is supposed to be their trustee?”
Rita Capitan, co-founder of Eastern Navajo Diné Against Uranium Mining, expressed disappointment at the majority decision.
“I can't believe that the three judges in Denver, who seemed to take our plea to heart when we were there for oral arguments in May 2008, decided after waiting for nearly two years that there was nothing wrong with the proposed mining. How can one judge debate and dissent when the other two said, in essence, 'It is OK, nothing is wrong'?! They obviously forgot all information given to them.”
ENDAUM is the first community group ever to challenge a NRC source materials license for an ISL uranium mine.
Larry King, a member of ENDAUM who lives near Section 17, expressed frustration.
“We have people that are sick and dying. There was another community member that was buried last week. She died of cancer. How many more people have to go and die like that before the legacy is addressed?
“These people that are advocating for new uranium mining, they need to look at these people that are suffering from cancer. It's not a pretty sight.”
King said they plan to appeal the decision because the uranium legacy waste has to be addressed. “It's a mess out there. You've got to clean up the mess before you can even think about doing other matters again. The community of Churchrock, we don't support uranium mining. We're advocating to get this legacy addressed first, get some comprehensive health studies.”
For NRC and the majority to say the waste is natural background is “mind-boggling,” he said. “It's not natural background and we have the data to prove that.”
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