Monday, June 20, 2011

Rep: Uranium ban needed to protect Grand Canyon

People want the Grand Canyon protected

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX -- Rep. Daniel Patterson, D-Tucson (District 29), released the following statement today regarding U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar’s moratorium extension on uranium mining at the Grand Canyon:

“I applaud Secretary Salazar’s decision to extend the moratorium on uranium mining at Arizona’s natural point of pride, the Grand Canyon. This decision is as a win-win for Arizona to protect our beautiful lands, public safety and tourism for years to come.

“Uranium mining has a disastrous history from deadly abandoned sites to dams breached and radioactive waste seeping into aquifers and contaminating water. We already know uranium mining isn’t a good idea. It’s a threat to public health and safety as well as to the tourism business in Arizona.

“Along with other fellow House Democrats, for years I asked Secretary Salazar to make sure that our state’s natural wonder and beautiful lands that draw millions here from all over the world are protected from those who threaten to destroy it. Today, those people were held accountable.

“Secretary Salazar’s decision is key to our state’s tourism economy and public health, and today, we took one step forward in preserving and conserving the Grand Canyon for generations to come.”

Representative Patterson is an ecologist and the Ranking Member on the Arizona House Energy and Natural Resources Committee. He formerly worked with US Interior agency BLM.

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