Mine on Sacred Land Could Close

July 19, 2000

Source: The Arizona Republic

On July 19, 2000, The Arizona Republic published an article about the White Vulcan Mine in the San Francisco Peaks that has been "denounced by Native Americans as a scar on sacred soil and by environmentalists as an eyesore." The mine could be closing soon. The "Interior Department and Phoenix-based Tufflite Corp., the mine's owners, have been quietly negotiating to close the pumice operation, which is located in an area holy to 13 Indian tribes." Mine manager Art Morgan said that he would be willing to close the mine if the government "came up with $10 million." Both the Department of the Interior and Tufflite declined to comment on the negotiations."The peaks are a special place to the people of Arizona," said Raquel Poturalski, a spokeswoman for the Coconino National Forest, which administers the area. "We are hopeful that these negotiations will ultimately ensure that mining will not only stop, but that the land will be reclaimed."