Please contact your Members of Congress today and ask them to cosponsor the Save Oak Flat Act to repeal Section 3003 of the National Defense Authorization Act.
Last December in the closing days of the 113th Congress in the dead of night, Rio Tinto’s Congressional supporters stuck the Oak Flat land exchange onto a must past national defense bill. The land exchange became Section 3003 of the defense bill. Section 3003 has nothing to do with national defense, but Rio Tinto’s supports knew that the land exchange would not pass on its own.
In June of this year, Congressman Grijalva from Arizona introduced HR 2811, the Save Oak Flat Act, which will repeal Section 3003 and keep Oak Flat as public land. As of now, 36 members of Congress from both parties have cosponsored this bill.
With your help, that number will grow and the bill will pass and protect Oak Flat!
Roger Featherstone, Director
- Please go to our action alert page and type in your address. You will see your Representative and the Washington, DC office telephone number.
- Please call the office number. (this is not automated, you’ll have to dial the phone the old fashioned way!)
- Let the receptionist know your name (you can add a group affiliation if you have one, i.e.: “I’m a member of the Arizona Mining Reform Coalition.”).
- Tell the receptionist you would like your Congressperson to co-sponsor HR 2811, the Save Oak Flat Act. You should explain further a reason or two to protect Oak Flat. Some examples are:
- Oak Flat is a Native American sacred site and it critical for the religious freedom of Arizona Tribes.
- Oak Flat is a prime recreation area, especially for rock climbing and bouldering with more than 2,500 established climbing routes.
- Oak Flat is also a rare desert riparian area and in Arizona, less than 10% of this type of habitat remains.
- The land exchange would allow mining companies to avoid following our nation’s environmental and cultural laws and would bypass the permitting process all other mines in the country have followed.
- The land exchange is on the only law passed by the US Congress that would privatize a Native American sacred site on public land.
- The land exchange is the largest loss of rock climbing on public lands ever.
- Answer any questions the receptionist might have and let us know any feedback from the office that would be useful.
- If your Congressperson has already co-sponsored HR 2811, thank them.
- You will notice that the action alert page has a sample letter you can edit and send to your Member of Congress. Once you have made your call, you could also send a letter.
- Thanks for taking action!