TAKE ACTION! Ways to help save Oak Flat
Biłdagoteel (Oak Flat) is a sacred site in the Tonto National Forest for the San Carlos Apache and other Native American Tribes in the region—a place to pray, collect water and medicinal plants, gather acorns, honor the people who are buried there, and perform sacred religious ceremonies. Oak Flat is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a Traditional Cultural Property and protected from mining by since 1955 by President Eisenhower. Resolution’s underground mine would cause Oak Flat to collapse into a mile-wide, 1,000-foot-deep crater. In 2014, the US government promised the land to foreign copper mining interests to build a copper mine. The Resolution Copper Project would create one of the largest copper mines in the US destroying this sacred site.
"Arizona faces unprecedented surface water supply reductions worsened by climate change, hydrogeologist James Wells, Ph.D., PG concludes in a report released Sept. 28, 2021. "Like all mining operations in Arizona, the Resolution Mine is exempt from state groundwater withdrawal regulations. The mine can pump an unlimited amount of water, and is projected to use 250 billion gallons of water over the life of the mine. More articles on the fight to save Oak Flat.
SAVE OAK FLAT ACT (SOFA) - Urgent call to action! .
Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-AZ, introduced the H.R. 1884 Save Oak Flat Act (SOFA) earlier this year. It is now included in the House’s $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill. H.R. 1884 will repeal Section 3003 land exchange of the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT, introduced an identical bill (S 915) in the Senate. The Save Oak Flat Act (SOFA) would protect a 2,422-acre site known as Chí’chil Biłdagoteel (Oak Flat), the foundation of traditional Western Apache culture and religion. Congress now has a historic opportunity to protect American Indian cultural and religious resources by enacting the Save Oak Flat Act, which is currently included in the
of the budget reconciliation legislation in Subtitle B—Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands 3 SEC. 70201. OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL (page 10)
Please, ask your members of Congress to Support the Save Oak Flat Act.
Below are several ways to contact your congressional leaders. Even if you have contacted them in the past, please contact them again. Each of the pre-written letters below are different and can be edited to include a personal message to have more impact. Please ask your congressional leaders to keep SEC. 70201 OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL in the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill. The bill includes a provision that reverses a land swap from the federal government to private copper mining interests in Oak Flat, an area within Arizona’s Tonto National Forest.
- Please call or write each of the Arizona Congressional Leaders (or the Congressional Leaders in your state). Please ask them to keep SEC. 70201 OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL from the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill. Arizona’s two Democratic senators, Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema and Democrat Rep. Tom O’Halleran, whose 1st Congressional District includes Oak Flat, have not taken a public position on the legislation.
Oak Flat Needs Arizona's Senators to Step Up
- Pre-written letter to AZ Senators via Center for Biological Diversity - Please edit to ask them to keep SEC. 70201 OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL from the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill.
- Take action now to help push through this critical legislation
- Pre-written letter to members of Congress via Center for Biological Diversity. Please edit to ask them to keep SEC. 70201 OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL from the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill.
- Please ask your members of Congress to support and co-sponsor the Save Oak Flat Act
- Pre-written via Action Alert, Arizona Mining Oversight, Oak Flat Mining- Please edit to ask them to keep SEC. 70201 OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL from the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill.
A fast and easy way to write to Congress is via text message to RESISTBOT
1) Send text to 50409 type RESIST.
2) Follow the prompts.
3) Type your message
Example: "Please support the Save Oak Flat Act (SOFA) and keep SEC. 70201 OAK FLAT WITHDRAWAL from the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill." ADD your personal reasons why you support protecting sacred Oak Flat to have more impact.
4) Resistbot will compose letter and send it to YOUR congressional leaders. If you wish to write a longer message, it's easiest to compose your message first, then copy/paste it into your text message.
Sign Petition via Move On, Campaign created by Wendsler Nosie Sr.
What's at Stake?
Pray: Calling all people of faith, all religions to pray for Oak Flat
- Please ground all actions in prayer.
- Pray in your own manner, organize others to pray with you
- Find a prayer practice that fits you—take a walk, light a candle, sit quietly...
- Reach out to your religious and spiritual leaders and congregations to ask for prayers for Oak Flat.
- Set intention for the safety and wellbeing of Oak Flat, of all life and water of that Sacred site and of all who defend it, for the passing of the Save Oak Flat Act by Congress.
- Pray for Wendsler’s safety, the San Carlos Apache Nation, the fresh water that runs at Oak Flat, action in Congress, the trees, plants, and animals in danger.
Physical Presence and Prayer at Sacred Oak Flat
Go camping by yourself or with family at Oak Flat. Visit Oak Flat for a day to pray in your own manner. Please be mindful the Oak Flat campground is located within an Apache Sacred site. Please respect it as you would respect any place of worship. This is not an occupation camp. Apache Stronghold does not promote large gatherings due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. If you come to Oak Flat, please follow all CDC guidelines to keep yourself, loved ones, and others safe.
Display Protect Oak Flat yard sign by your tent or camper. Buy Protect Oak Flat Yard Sign
Make Oak Flat visible on social and other media
Post videos, repost news stories to your social media accounts
Promote Oak Flat with a Zoom virtual background - Add an Oak Flat Landscape to your Zoom background picture. See: Take Action Gallery for background pictures. A link to a Zoom Virtual Background tutorial is provided.
Write a Letter to the Editor of local newspaper about how you feel about Oak Flat & why it's important to you.
Spread the word - Talk to friends, family, neighbors, groups and faith leaders.
Host a digital “house meeting” & watch one of the multimedia videos to discuss & take action.
Participate in Online Events & Webinars | See EVENTS for more info.
Rio Tinto & Resolution Copper
Call, write or publish a public letter to Rio Tinto and Resolution Copper insisting that they pull out of all plans related to future mining in Oak Flat. There is no possible mitigation for the destruction of sacred land. Rio Tinto Chairman Simon Thompson, said the company would “never again” allow this type of destruction to take place. Rio Tinto has promised to act “in ways that are sensitive and responsive to the values and expectations of Traditional Owners and Indigenous communities.”
Learn more about Rio Tinto
- Evasion and hypocrisy: the 2021 Rio Tinto plc AGM | London Mining Network, Apr 14, 2021 | Report by Richard Solly, Co-ordinator, London Mining Network, with assistance from Dina Rui, Roger Featherstone, Sukhgerel Dugersuren, Yvonne Orengo and Zoe Lujic.
- Rio Tinto's chairman to step down in latest shakeup following Indigenous cave destruction | CNN Business | Laura He, March 2, 2021