1,100 mining claims next to the Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is one of the world’s natural wonders. From its jagged cliffs to the winding Colorado River that runs through it — from the geologic history written on its walls to the 25 native species sheltered in its caverns. 

But this national treasure is at risk: Mining companies have staked roughly 1,100 uranium mining claims within just five miles of Grand Canyon National Park. Toxic uranium mining poses a serious threat of contamination to the park itself, and to the 25 million people who drink water from the Colorado River.

Interior Dept. backs ban on mining near Grand Canyon

Our staff and members are tackling the threat. When we alerted our online activist network to the threat to the Grand Canyon, people sprang into action. We mobilized more than 300,000 Americans to demand stronger protections for the canyon. 

In July, Anna Aurilio, director of our Washington office, released a report on the risks of mining near the canyon. "Grand Canyon At Risk" exposed the devastating legacy of mining near the canyon and throughout the west. 

With your activism and our advocacy, we can protect the Grand Canyon and our drinking water

Your activism and our advocacy are a powerful combination. Thanks in part to our efforts, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced that he would consider a plan to put 1 million acres around the park off limits to mining for 20 years. 

But mining companies and their allies in Congress haven’t given up the fight — and neither can we.

Some lawmakers in Wasington, D.C., are backing a bill that would prevent the administration from protecting the Grand Canyon. We need you to get involved if we’re going to defend the Canyon once and for all. 

If enough of us speak out, we can ensure the Grand Canyon is protected. Join us today. 

Issue updates

Report | Environment Nevada

Trashing our Treasures: Congressional Assault on the Best of America

National parks, forests and public lands are essential for maintaining healthy ecosystems, safeguarding our waterways, cleaning up the air we breathe, protecting wildlife habitat, and providing opportunities for Americans to connect with the outdoors.

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News Release | Environment Nevada

Great Basin National Park is at risk of development and resource exploitation

Environment Nevada released a new report today revealing that pristine areas in Great Basin National Park could be at risk of development and resource exploitation if bills moving through the House of Representatives are signed into law.  

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News Release | Environment Nevada

Past Disasters Show Dangers of Uranium Mining Near the Grand Canyon

Uranium mining has left a legacy of disastrous pollution in the West, and now mining poses a risk to the Grand Canyon — one of our greatest national parks. Thousands of new mining claims threaten to destroy the canyon’s stunning landscape and pollute the Colorado River — a major source of drinking water for Nevada — according to a report released today by Environment Nevada entitled “Grand Canyon at Risk: Uranium Mining Doesn't Belong Near Our National Treasures.”

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Report | Environment Nevada

Grand Canyon At Risk: Uranium mining doesn't belong near our national treasures

Uranium mining—which often requires vast open pits, spreads radioactive dust through the air, and leaks radioactivity and toxic chemicals into the environment—is among the riskiest industrial activities in the world. Every uranium mine ever operated in the United States has required some degree of toxic waste cleanup, and the worst have sickened dozens of people, contaminated miles of rivers and streams, and required the cleanup of hundreds of acres of land.

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