State Rep. D. Wonda Johnson, D-Gallup, teared up as she told her colleagues on the interim legislative Indian Affairs Committee and the Rural Economic Opportunities Task Force about the Church Rock uranium spill of 1979.
Johnson was a member of a panel presenting to the committees about the economic development potential of cleaning up uranium sites in New Mexico. The panelists asked legislators to encourage the New Mexico Economic Development Department to make environmental remediation one of the target industries in New Mexico. In addition, the panelists said it is important to train New Mexicans —especially those who live in impacted communities —to work in remediation.
Johnson recalled standing on the porch with her grandmother as her grandmother looked out at her land, homestead, livestock and farm while the uranium waste flowed down the Rio Puerco. Days later, the livestock died. The waste also contaminated the corn field.
“My grandmother stood on […]
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