Hopi and Dineh:
Black Mesa Communities continue stand against Mine Expansion:
Carl "Lone Eagle" Custalow, Chief of the Mattaponi Tribe finally found relief from his 15 year battle to stop Newport News from building a reservoir in King Williams Co, VA. The upriver reservoir would have destroyed the tribal fishing industry and pristine stewardship of the river that runs through their lands.
The Chief's peaceful, yet sometimes life threatening diligence to stop the project slowly won over local support. This ugly battle against power structures finally ended in 2009 when City Manager Neil A. Morgan recommended ending the project, and Mayor Joe S. Frank officially pronounced it dead.
The Grassy Narrows or Asubpeeschoseewagon First Nation:
Starting in the early 2000's Grassy Narrow's activists in Canada created human blockades to stop loggers from clear cutting portions of the First Nation’s traditional territory.
In the summer of 2008, they forced AbitibiBowater to give up its license to the Whiskey Jack Forest and commit to no logging without consent from the community. US logging multinational, Weyerhaeuser, committed to not use wood from the area that Grassy Narrows is protecting. In 2011, the Ontario Superior Court ruled that the Ontario government cannot allow logging that violates indigenous treaty rights. In 2018, Chief Turtle and the Grassy Narrows’ council issued the Grassy Narrows’ Land Declaration, which bans logging and mining on their territory. It also designates their territory as an Indigenous Sovereignty and Protected Area.
The next generation of youth from Grassy are also raising their voices. This past summer (2022), several community members made the more than 1,000-mile trek from Grassy Narrows to Toronto to take part in the annual “River Run” – a walk organized to bring justice and awareness to those suffering from mercury poisoning caused by paper companies polluting the waters upriver. They are demanding fair compensation for all residents of Grassy Narrows for the ongoing mercury crisis, support to help the community restore its way of life, and for an end to all mining and logging in their territory.