Havasupai Tribe submits testimony on Grand Canyon Protection Act
The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources heard testimony on the Grand Canyon Protection Act on Tuesday.
The panel received written testimony from an Arizona tribe that lives within the Canyon, the Havasupai, which has been fighting against a uranium mine located on its ancestral lands.
Conservationists say that the bill, which would ban uranium mining on lands outside Grand Canyon National Park, is important to protect water resources in the region.
The bill would not stop development of the Pinyon Plain Mine, located near the South Rim and not far from the village of Supai, where the Havasupai Tribe makes its home.
The tribe is concerned that if the mine goes into production, it will harm the local water supply.
“But for us, the tribe has always been in opposition to uranium mining, and will still continue to push, to preserve and protect one of the natural wonders of the world,” said Stuart Chavez, a member of the tribal council.
Arizona Sens. Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly introduced the bill, which would protect more than a million acres of public lands.