Thursday, January 12, 2012

Rep welcomes moratorium on Grand Canyon mining

Arizonans back Grand Canyon protection.

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Rep. Daniel Patterson, D-Tucson, praised the decision by U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar to issue a moratorium on dangerous uranium mining on a million acres of land near the Grand Canyon.

The moratorium will be in place for the next 20 years to protect public health and Arizona’s beautiful lands.

“I applaud Secretary Salazar’s decision to extend the moratorium on uranium mining at Arizona’s natural point of pride, the Grand Canyon,” said Patterson, Ranking Member on the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “This decision is a win-win for Arizona to protect our beautiful lands, public safety and tourism for years to come.”

The moratorium, issued on Monday, is an extension of an already-existing ban that Salazar issued in 2009.

“Uranium mining has a disastrous history from deadly abandoned sites to dams breached and radioactive waste seeping into aquifers and contaminating water,” Patterson said. “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."

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