"Navajos Worry Uranium Superfund Addition Is a False EPA Promise"

"Trust is in short supply that the EPA will follow through on promises to clean up uranium mine contamination that has sickened generations of Navajo people, tribal members told agency officials visiting a contaminated mining area on Friday in Arizona.

The EPA added the uranium mining area, known as the Lukachukai Mountains Mining District, to the National Priorities List, or Superfund, on March 5. The site includes about 100 uranium and vanadium mine waste piles which have contaminated the soil and streamwater and groundwater in nearby Navajo communities.

About 30 million tons of uranium ore were mined at more than 500 sites on Navajo lands during the Cold War between 1944 and 1986. Many of those sites have never been cleaned up, leaving a long-lasting legacy of radioactive waste considered one of the region’s most significant environmental justice challenges.

Cove, Ariz., is surrounded by at least 42 abandoned uranium mines with above-ground uranium waste piles in the area dotting the landscape. "

Bobby Magill reports for Bloomberg Environment March 15, 2024.

Source: Bloomberg Environment, 03/18/2024