Chairman Taylor agrees with the recent Navajo Nation Council vote to require Peabody Coal Co. to stop pumping water from the N-aquifer by Dec. 31, 2005, and consider using the C-aquifer instead. The C-aquifer is a subsurface water body beneath most of northeastern Arizona.
Chairman Taylor said in an e-mail interview Aug. 23 that the Hopi Tribe’s stance has always been to end Peabody’s use of the N-aquifer.
“We remain unwavering in our goal and now that the Navajo Nation has formally voiced their feelings expressing similar sentiments we believe that we will be even more successful in securing this goal,” he said.
Taylor rejects Hopi Vice Chairman Caleb Johnson’s proposal to use a railroad to move the coal rather than a slurry line.
Vice Chairman Johnson said the railroad would eliminate the need for the slurry line and using water from the N-aquifer.
Chairman Taylor notes that in the alternative transportation studies by the stakeholders and the federal government in the 1990s that the railroad came up as a suggested proposal but was found to be cost prohibitive.