Protect Ancient Waters Against Destructive Dam

Target: Kimberly Bose, Secretary of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

Goal: Protect ancient and sacred waters from unsustainable and destructive dam.

Ancient and sacred waters long respected by Native American tribes are under threat of a new, destructive dam. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued a permit for a proposed dam, against the concerns and outcry of indigenous groups and environmentalists. Located on Navajo Nation land in Arizona, this dam would pump groundwater that takes thousands of years to renew. The land where the dam would be built is also sacred to the Hopi and Hualapai tribes.

The proposed dam is unusual because it pumps groundwater to the surface so that the water can be released to produce energy when river levels are low. Groundwater is not a renewable resource because it takes thousands of years to replenish. Rain and overland flow must sink through the top layer of soil and percolate through the water table before it gets deep enough to become groundwater. Arizona gets hardly any precipitation, and even less with climate change, so renewing the groundwater could take even longer than normal.

Agriculture often uses groundwater for irrigation, especially in hot and arid climates like in Arizona. Wasting the water on a dam is frivolous and could result in a water crisis. Water isn’t just valuable for its practical uses, its rivers and lakes often hold cultural and spiritual value. The Hopi and Hualapai tribes consider the site of the proposed dam to be sacred. Disregarding their opposition to the dam denies their historic ties to the land.

The beauty of these rivers should be preserved for future generations, as well as the valuable groundwater that flows under them. Call for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to revoke its permit to build a dam on Big Canyon.


Dear Secretary Bose,

The proposed dam on Big Canyon would use up unrenewable groundwater and destroy a site that is sacred to the Hopi and Hualapai people. The dam pumps groundwater to produce energy, which is a valuable resource, especially in Arizona where it is needed for irrigation. Groundwater takes thousands of years to replenish and should not be wasted on this dam.

With climate change drying up Arizona, it is vital that groundwater be saved for irrigation. It is reckless to use up a water source on a dam. This site should be preserved so that future generations can enjoy both a water source and a beautiful part of nature. I insist that you revoke the permit to build this destructive dam.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Al_HikesAZ



  1. Evan Jane Kriss says:

    Do NOT DISTURB NON RENEWABLE GROUNDWATER resources. Do NOT DISTURB SITES HELD HOLY by our Native Americans. This ill thought out plan MUST BNOT PROCEED.

  2. Settlers took everything from the Native Americans. We moved them from their original lands as white people desired either the land to live on or for the minerals, etc. that the land contained. It just is not right to take more from them including their holy places. They have always been great stewards of this Earth – they know that Mother Earth gives them everything they need to live. The people who took over the land had, and still don’t have, respect for the Earth and all that she holds. We are not APART from the Earth, but A PART of her. Love your Mother 🌎.

  3. Justin Recht says:

    Once gone – it is gone forever!
    Protect water at all cost!

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