Navajo-Hopi Nations,Flagstaff & Winslow News
Mon, Sept. 27

Black Mesa Trust opposes negative image<br>

Black Mesa Trust President Leonard Selestewa

Selestewa pointed out using water to slurry coal is the point of contention.

“The simple truth is that Black Mesa Trust and the Hopi Tribal Council agreed and worked together to end the industrial use of N-aquifer water by Peabody Western Coal Company to transport Black Mesa Mine coal to the Mohave Generating Station in Laughlin, Nevada,” Selestewa said. “We are now separated by our positions on the continuation of coal slurry with yet another source of water. What BMT has learned throughout this ongoing affair is that the people who value water have spoken loud and clear that the use of water to slurry coal must end.”

Masayesva echoes this position.

“We are opposed to using any groundwater for slurry operations,” Masayesva said during a phone interview on April 9. “We support the transportation of water to the villages for municipal uses. We have stated that we do not oppose this use if the tribe shows that there is a need for it. I don’t think that the citizens will oppose it either. But that need has not yet been demonstrated. Senator Jon Kyl does not believe that there is a danger to the N-aquifer, and has asked why the government should support the expense of bringing water [to Hopi villages] from another aquifer?”

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