Thursday, February 2, 2023

Play

Palestinian advocates praise a new fact sheet on discrimination, Pennsylvania considers extending deadlines for abuse claims, and North Dakota's corporate farming debate affects landowners and tribes.

Play

Vice President Kamala Harris urges Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, the House begins the process to impeach the Homeland Security Secretary, and the Federal Reserve nudges interest rates up.

Play

Is bird flu, inflation or price gouging to blame for astronomical egg prices? Pregnancy can be life-changing or life-ending depending on where you live, and nine tribal schools are transforming their outdoor spaces into community gathering areas.

Report: Reclaiming Abandoned, Degraded Lands Benefits Economy, Climate

Play

Monday, September 26, 2022   

A new study found reclaiming abandoned mines and other degraded lands could bring hundreds of millions of dollars to the U.S. economy, fight climate change, and create thousands of jobs.

In the report, the National Wildlife Federation identifies more than four million sites, in Arizona and across the country, in need of remediation.

Jessica Arriens, program manager for climate energy policy at the National Wildlife Federation and the report's co-author, said cleaning them up should benefit the most affected communities.

"The burden of degraded lands really falls heavily on frontline and rural communities," Arriens pointed out. "And I would argue that makes it even more important that we really think thoughtfully about making sure we're engaging those communities in the implementation of degraded land reclamation."

According to the report, every dollar invested in land restoration could return up to $30 in the form of improved food production, water quality and carbon sequestration. The cleanup needs include abandoned mine and oil-and-gas well sites, brownfield and Superfund sites.

Arizona ranks among the top states for its amount of degraded lands.

Scott Garlid, executive director of the Arizona Wildlife Federation, believes the Grand Canyon State has some of the most dangerous sites anywhere.

"The 'poster child,' if you want to think of it that way, for why we need to do something is, there's something over 500 -- and I think most estimates say over 800 -- abandoned and unremediated uranium mines on the Navajo reservation," Garlid noted.

Garlid added old uranium mines are especially hazardous because most have not been identified, plugged, or covered, which can spread deadly radiation across vast parts of Arizona and tribal lands.

"It wasn't the reservations who were asking to put the mines in, in the first place, it was the government and others that got permission to do that," Garlid emphasized. "Some of it goes back to the Cold War, and some of it goes back to other times. So, I don't know why, but we haven't done anything, really, about it."

The report urged state and federal lawmakers to increase funding for reclamation, saying it will help people and wildlife thrive, address the climate crisis, and restore outdoor recreation opportunities.

Disclosure: The National Wildlife Federation contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Endangered Species & Wildlife, Energy Policy, and Water. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
Protestors at the University of California-Berkeley demonstrate in support of student groups that passed a bylaw pledging not to invite pro-Zionist speakers. (Palestine Legal)

Social Issues

Groups fighting for Palestinian rights are praising a new fact sheet on religious discrimination from the U.S. Department of Education's Office for …


Social Issues

Lawmakers and immigrants-rights activists in the Commonwealth are hoping to pass the Language Access and Inclusion Act, which would dramatically …

Environment

New U.S. Department of Agriculture rules will target fraud and increase oversight of the $64 billion-a-year organic food industry. In Iowa, the …


While mortality rates for pregnant women have decreased globally, they continue to rise in the United States, with Black women three times more likely to die during pregnancy than white women. (Inez/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

By Jennifer Weiss-Wolf for Ms. Magazine.Broadcast version by Eric Galatas for Colorado News Connection reporting for the Ms. Magazine-Public News …

Health and Wellness

With Black History Month underway, Wisconsin researchers and support groups are highlighting the disparities in cases of Alzheimer's disease…

Environment

Oregon is pursuing an aggressive climate plan to switch to renewable energy sources, but it faces one often overlooked issue: enough high-voltage …

Social Issues

A measure in the Washington State Legislature would provide free school meals to K-12 students, but nutrition service workers are worried they are …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021