Four Indian nations are currently involved with the U.S. Department of Energy in the largest environmental cleanup program in the world. The Indian Nations Program on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Southeast Washington state is attempting to forestall untold devastation to the Columbia River and the Washington/Oregon coasts.
But this most toxic site on earth (pre-Chernobyl) is only one of many lethal landscapes of radioactive waste throughout Indian country. As documented at the National Library for the Environment under Native Americans and the Environment, indigenous peoples are waging battles to survive toxic pollution across North America. While this environmental injustice remains largely hidden from mainstream view, the rapidly escalating demand for aboriginal energy and water resources is bringing this nightmare out into the open.
When choosing between habitual patterns of consumption and simpler, alternative ways of life, the carcinogenic consequences are becoming increasingly clear. What we do about that as individuals, citizens and communities matters. Everything is connected.
The library is dedicated to the memory of Secwepemc Chief George Manuel (1921-1989), to the nations of the Fourth World and to the elders and generations to come.access here