Join Native Americans to save their traditional lands from mining


Six Arizona Tribes sign letter to President Bush
to save Apache Leap, Oak Flat and Devil's Canyon

SAN CARLOS APACHE, Wendsler Nosie, Sr., Tribal Chairman, WHITE MOUNTAIN APACHE, Ronnie Lupe, Tribal Chairman, CAMP VERDE YAVAPAI APACHE, Jamie Fullmer, Tribal Chairman, TONTO APACHE TRIBE, Ivan Smith, Tribal Chairman, HUALAPAI TRIBE, Charles Vaughn, Tribal Chairman, HOPI TRIBE, Todd Honyaoma Sr., Tribal Vice-Chairman
Additional signatory: MASCALERO APACHE, Mark R. Chino, President


The Tribes are asking President Bush to preserve these traditional lands
for their unique recreational and historical values.
Sign a petition to express your alignment with their efforts to save this incredible area of Arizona:

Link to Sign Petition

Bottom Line: Two foreign mining companies with the worst possible environmental records, both internationally and here in U.S., are getting an act of U.S. Congress to make public lands into private domain through "exchanges." The Senate Bill S.1862/House Bill HR 3301, Southeast Arizona Federal Land Exchange and Conservation Act of 2007 will enable them to proceed with mining operations without the Environmental Impact process and oversight mandated on public lands. To make matters worse, some groups and an Arizona Congressman have been able to find some benefits from the land swaps. Touting her "jobs" mantra, Governor Napolitano even met with mining managers in London. She had failed to collect the facts that an operation six miles up the road needs 400 workers, another 25 miles away needs 300 workers. By the end of the year, another new mine 5 miles away, which is also being contested by local Native Americans, plans to gear up with another 500 workers.

Pastor introduced Bill in House Aug 1—with 3 co-sponsors
House Bill H.R. 3301

Senate Bill introduced July 24!!
Senate Bill S. 1862
Senator Kyl's statements at introduction of Bill

I sn't it time we started honoring the traditions and practices and the right to their own property of Native Americans? They do not own mineral rights on their reservations. It is noteworthy that uranium exploitation and its side-effects was rampant on reservations. In other cases, when the reservations were designated, the U.S. Government omitted much of their traditional sacred lands, such as Apache Leap in Arizona, Mt. Taylor in New Mexico, plus Cave Hills, Slim Buttes, and Black Hills, all in South Dakota.

Earthworks' analysis of current proposed Land Exchange Bill

Report to all Arizona Congress persons—sent 9 a.m. July 24, 2007
If you live in Arizona call your U.S. Reps and ask them if they have read the report!

If you don't live in Arizona, send the Report Link to your U. S. Congress Reps and Senators, then phone and ask if they have received it. Find your Congress Members
or your Senators

Press Release for Journalists

What are the problems?

  1. Potential damage to Apache Leap, a historical and sacred site of Native American heroes.
    See information on Apache Leap
    See Power Point on projected mining technique

  2. Loss of a scenic recreational area. Mining is not sustainable; it has to be done on lands that without water, forage and trees.
    See report on mining reality

  3. Probability of subsidence: The company asserts that there will be no subsidence with a hole 4,000 to 7,000 feet deep and sq feet long and wide. Nevertheless, they would not give a guarantee to Access Fund and they will close the region for recreational use. The bottom line on subsidence: It's totally non-predictable where it will happen, but it will happen according to the experts:

    Madan Singh, Director of Arizona Department of Mines and mineral resources, reports that, “Subsidence is an inevitable consequence of underground mining – it may be small and localized or extend over large areas, it may be immediate or delayed for many years” (SME, 1992). Fejes calls subsidence “a natural result of underground mining,” and goes on to state that, “When a void is created nature will eventually seek the most stable geologic configuration, which is a collapse of the void and consolidation of the overburden material” (Mining, 1997). Central to all these opinions is the underlying fact that subsidence will occur and will result in impacts to the overlying strata.
    See full report on subsidence reality

  4. Disposal of waste: the total of the bulk tailings and the concentrate tailings are calculated to be at the height of a 20 story building (200 ft) spread over 2,389 acres. That's quite a waste pile!
    See tailings calculations

  5. Potential of lowering of water table, which could affect adjacent creeks and the town of Superior's public water supply. Sorry, no report is available or mandated on the water level situation!
    See a short video on the need to protect water in public lands

  6. Loss of habitat: The Oak Flat area is a well-known birding area and has been noted as such on the DeLORME Arizona Atlas. Five of the bird species seen there are listed on the National Audubon Society's watchlist of declining species of conservation concern, including Costa's Hummingbird, Black-chinned Sparrow, Harris's Sparrow, Lewis's Woodpecker, and Gray Vireo. Oak Flat is also part of the geographically-limited home range for the endangered Arizona Hedgehog Cactus.
    See Land Exchange properties

  7. Loss of two major climbing areas: Oak Flat, home of the famed Phoenix Bouldering Contest, held here since 1989, and Devil's Canyon, a crown jewels with some of the finest remaining riparian habitat in Arizona because it is accessible only by 4-wheel drive.
    See awesome photos provided by Friends of Queen Creek

    Go to Friends of Queen Creek for information to contact U.S. Legislators from Arizona, (all but two are co-sponsors), Governor Napolitano and other Congresspersons to let them know you are supporting the Native Americans in their efforts to withdraw their traditional lands from mining.

Analysis of Land Exchange Bill by Earthworks

Summary of news articles on issue

Open Letter from Retired Miner in Superior

1872 Mining Law Reform Information

Breaking News: Capitol Hill Debate Begins on Mining ReformDick Kamp, Wick Comm.
                                 Lawmakers to Discuss 1872 Law ReformJohn Miller, Associated Press

Act Now for Mining Law Reform