White Mesa Ute Community, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, Utah
Greenaction has worked with the White Mesa Ute Mountain Ute tribal community group, ‘White Mesa Concerned Community’, the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe and allies for nearly two decades in the fight to close down ‘Energy Fuels’ uranium mill, the last such facility in the US and to protect peoples’ health, environment, and sacred and culturally significant Indigenous sites.
The White Mesa Ute Community of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe is located between Blanding and Bluff in southern Utah, and is near Cedar Mesa, the Bears Ears National Monument, Valley of the Gods, the San Juan River, national parks, and many other beautiful and sacred areas. The Ute Mountain Ute Tribe is based in Towaoc, Colorado, and White Mesa is a satellite community of the Tribe. The White Mesa Ute Community is adjacent to the ‘Energy Fuels’ uranium mill, where uranium tailings and other radioactive contaminated materials are sent for “processing” – and dumping. Radioactive pollution and other contaminants are emitted from the mill into the air, land, and groundwater, threatening public health and the environment. The uranium mill was built in the 1970’s directly on top of hundreds of culturally significant and sacred Indigenous sites, including burials and ceremonial structures. The expansion of the mill would destroy and desecrate even more of these precious sites.
Campaigns and Programs
Shut Down Energy Fuels Uranium Mill Campaign
As part of this campaign, Greenaction, White Mesa Concerned Community and allies are also working to stop new uranium mines from operating due to contamination concerns in those areas and at White Mesa. Since 2017, the White Mesa Concerned Community and Greenaction have held annual Spiritual Walks and Protests against the Uranium Mill. The event is held in May, and begins at the White Mesa Community Center with a rally, then participants walk over four miles along Highway 191 to the front gate of the uranium mill.
White Mesa Ute Community Environmental Justice Leadership Academy
Greenaction and the White Mesa Concerned Community conduct annual leadership academy programs for White Mesa youth and adults. We work together to give tribal members the knowledge, skills and opportunities to advocate and organize for their community’s well-being.
- White Mesa Ute Community protest against Energy Fuels Uranium Mill,
Saturday, October 9, 2021, Utah
- 3rd Annual White Mesa Spiritual Walk and Protest to Close the Energy Fuels Uranium Mill
- Greenaction & White Mesa Concerned Community Press Release, May 2018
- The water around a Utah uranium mill is growing more polluted. What does it mean for the nearby town? (Salt Lake Tribune, October 21, 2018)
- Neighbors of rural Utah uranium mill call state regulators ‘heartless’ (Salt Lake Tribune, June 9, 2017)
- Salt Lake Tribune Editorial, June 12, 2017
- Click to read Uranium Watch’s Factsheets and Reports
- Action Alerts
- See photo slide show about the uranium mill and nearby mines
- See photos form the 3rd annual White Mesa Community Protest & Spiritual Walk by Tim Peterson
- White Mesa Spiritual Walk Photos