Amazon warehouse workers reject union bid in Alabama
- The Daily Beast
Scott Buffon/Arizona Daily Sun via APJust 10 miles south of the entrance to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon is a giant hole in the ground where miners are hoping to strike it big with one of Earth’s rarest but deadliest elements—uranium. Despite it only being about 17 acres in size, the Canyon Mine extends over 1,400 feet down into the Earth’s surface and critics worry it could scar the Grand Canyon itself and pollute a nearby tribe’s water.Mining has been prevalent in the region surrounding the Grand Canyon since the early 1900s. During the atomic era of the 1950s, it was a little bit like the Wild West—interest in uranium mining soared and it evolved into a highly unregulated industry, where people were walking around with Geiger counters and shovels, hoping to sell it to the government for profit.As the price of uranium plummeted, so did interest in mining the region. However, in the mid-2000s, there was a massive market spike in the mineral, and the craze was back on. While better regulated, by the end of the decade there were over a thousand new uranium mining claims in the area surrounding the Grand Canyon.In 2012, unsure of the environmental consequences of uranium mining in the region, the Department of the Interior put a 20-year ban on staking new claims—effectively banning all new mining activities near the Grand Canyon.Conservationists were ecstatic about this. But there was just one small problem.Using a mining law from 1872 that critics call outdated, the USFS determined that miners who had established “valid existing rights,” to mine before the ban could continue to do so. To have such rights, a miner must have, before the ban, discovered and unearthed a “valuable mineral deposit”—one that can be extracted, removed, and marketed at a profit.The USFS found one mine to possess “valid existing rights,” and to thereby be exempt from the ban—Canyon Mine.The 2012 ban continued to draw scrutiny from both sides. Conservationists argued the ban should be made permanent, meanwhile, the Trump administration took steps to potentially eliminate it and make uranium more lucrative as a geopolitical strategy.As a result, Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) introduced the Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act to the House on Feb. 26, 2019, a bill that seeks to permanently ban all new mining in the region and protect the Grand Canyon from industrial interests.The bill passed the House via a partisan vote, and has been introduced into the Senate, where it is expected to pass as well.While conservationists view this as a good first step, the singular issue remains—Canyon Mine, which courtesy of the USFS decision in 2012, would remain exempt from the permanent ban.To get at the controversy of Canyon Mine, you don’t need to go too far down the shaft. In fact, even the name of the mine itself is a point of contention.The mine, which was named Canyon Mine across several owners and several decades, was recently renamed by its owner, Energy Fuels, to the Pinyon Planes Mine.Outlets have speculated that this was done to draw less attention to the mine. Curtis Moore, the VP of marketing and corporate development for the company, confirmed this, when he told The Daily Beast that this was done, “because conservationists were making it seem like we were mining in the Grand Canyon, which we are not.”Taylor McKinnon of the Center for Biological Diversity, a conservation nonprofit, laughed this off: “They named it Canyon Mine in the first place because of how close it is to the Grand Canyon—not us,” he said. He added—“It’s funny, I don’t think Pinyon Planes is even a real place.”As you delve deeper into the mine, the story only becomes more complex, obscure, and flat-out strange.Get this: In the 35 years it has been operational, there has never been uranium ore extracted from the mine. While this is mostly due to a lack of demand for uranium, among other factors, that doesn’t mean the mine isn’t filled with other problems—or at the very least, the potential for catastrophic ones.For starters, the mine is operating under a USFS Environmental Impact Statement, as required by the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) dating back to 1986, one that was originally challenged by the Havasupai Tribe in court. Despite the bans and the increase in knowledge about the hydrology of the Grand Canyon, as well as calls from conservationists and local tribes to conduct a new study, the USFS has refused to do so. A Federal Appellate court upheld this decision by the USFS in 2013.Moore defended the decision and said that having a new study done was unnecessary. “It’s like getting a permit for your house,” Moore told The Beast. “We were already approved—why get a new one?”McKinnon, of course, sees it another way. Citing that they haven’t extracted any uranium, he laughed, “If each EIS took 5 years, they could’ve done four by now. The truth is,” he added, “they don’t want to delve into the facts and the truth because they’re afraid.”However, in 2017, the inevitable happened. Despite the original environmental impact statement from 1986 that claimed the mine “would have no significant impact,” on the environment or the public interest,” and also suggested that “flooding was nearly impossible,” Energy Fuels pierced an aquifer in the mine, and water came gushing out.How “bad” this situation is depends on who you ask.For environmentalists, it’s as close to disaster as it gets. Several groups including the Center for Biological Diversity have called for the shutting-down and closure of the mine as a result of the flooding and the company’s response to it, which according to conservationists and the Arizona Daily Sun involved spraying contaminated water into forests and loading water into trucks to be taken to Utah. However, Energy Fuels doesn’t see a problem.In fact, when The Daily Beast mentioned the flooding to Energy Fuels, Moore defended it, claiming it was “done on purpose,” “all part of the plan,” and “in compliance with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) and the USFS.”Moore explained that the aquifer they pierced is perched, isolated, separate from the aquifers environmentalists are most afraid of being contaminated—groundwater aquifers—and that there is “no evidence,” and “no chance” that it currently is impacting or in the future will impact the Grand Canyon.Of course, environmentalists are already concerned it is happening. McKinnon said, “No one can assure us or them that this aquifer which was pierced was not connected to the Grand Canyon springs—which could both drain the springs and contaminate the groundwater.”While Moore said they have monitors to test the groundwater, environmentalists insist there should be more extensive monitoring done, especially since, “ADEQ has acknowledged that if there were a uranium leak into the groundwater, there is no plan to fix it,” said McKinnon.“The bottom line,” McKinnon argues, “is that they’ve created a flooding problem. The water flooding the mine and being pumped out exceeds EPA standards for dissolved uranium and arsenic. There are no guarantees in the long run—there are no guarantees that mining won’t harm the deep aquifer in the near future, even if it isn’t harmed now.”Moore argues that the flooding has been drastically reduced in recent years, and that comparing it to EPA standards for drinking water, as environmentalists frequently do, is irrelevant.“No one is suggesting you drink the water,” Moore intoned.As of now and as a result of these floods, the ADEQ is actually in the midst of developing a new draft Aquifer Protection Permit for Pinyon Planes Mine, which is expected to be out by April 26th.While this could lead to the end of Pinyon Planes Mine, conservationists aren’t getting their hopes up.“We petitioned to have them make a closure permit, but we doubt that will happen,” McKinnon said.For Moore, shutting down the mine would be a huge mistake. He views uranium as a path towards a greener, carbon-free future. “These activists are antinuclear for some reason,” he said, adding, “even though it is the best way to address climate change.” He went as far as to assert that “all of these claims [made by conservationists] are not based in science or reality.”For conservationists, they are just hoping this bill passes the Senate, although it will be the first battle in what they view as a long war.“The passage of this legislation would demonstrate the need to deal with Canyon Mine even more forcefully,” Taylor McKinnon said. He added, “But the bill itself, it’s narrow. It’s important but there’s a lot more that needs to be done, including a multi-level, multi-billion-dollar clean-up.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
Prince Philip died at the age of 99 on April 9, which is Prince Charles and Camilla's wedding anniversary. They've been married for 16 years.
Vaccine passports are a hot-button issue, but travelers already need vaccines to enter certain countries around the world
The idea of requiring proof of vaccination is not new. For years, select countries have had yellow fever vaccination entry requirements in place.
- Associated Press
The defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning acquired defenseman David Savard from the Columbus Blue Jackets in a three-team trade Saturday that also involved the Detroit Red Wings. Tampa Bay gave up a 2021 first-round pick and a 2022 third-rounder to Columbus for Savard and sent a 2021 fourth-rounder to Detroit. The Blue Jackets retained half of Savard’s $4.25 million salary-cap hit and the Red Wings got involved to pick up a quarter of it to help the cap-strapped Lightning.
- Associated Press
Bo Bichette had five RBIs, Randal Grichuk hit a three-run double during a seven-run second inning and the Toronto Blue Jays stopped a four-game skid by routing the Los Angeles Angels 15-1 on Saturday night following a rain delay that lasted more than 2 1/2 hours. Bichette had two-run doubles in the third and fourth, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. added RBI singles in both innings as the Blue Jays went up 14-1. The pair drew bases-loaded walks in the second from José Quintana (0-1), who allowed seven runs, five hits and four walks in 1 2/3 innings.
- The Daily Beast
Joe Raedle/GettyAfter 10 days of relentless developments in the Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) saga of scandals, the Florida Republican reemerged Friday evening to mostly ignore the most recent and damning reports and offer boilerplate MAGA defenses and applause lines.“I’m built for the battle, and I’m not going anywhere,” Gaetz told attendees at the Save America Summit at Trump Doral in Miami, Florida.As Gaetz tries to brush aside reports that he’s under investigation for paying women for sex—including, potentially, an underage minor—Gaetz seemed to see no irony in addressing an event hosted by “Women for America First.” Instead, he claimed the reports were “smears” and “wild conspiracy theories” promoted by a “lying media.”As the sun set on one of Trump’s golf clubs, Gaetz was celebrated as a hero and a “fearless leader.”Gaetz Paid Accused Sex Trafficker, Who Then Venmo’d TeenThe congressman kicked things off by regurgitating the lie that the 2020 “election was stolen” from former President Donald Trump, due to “changes to the rules.” He then moved into familiar “America First” boosterism before saying the past week had been “full of encouragement.”But outside the warm confines of another Trump property, the list of Gaetz scandals is growing and intensifying. Just a few hours before Gaetz spoke Friday, the House Ethics Committee announced it was also opening an investigation into the “public allegations” against him—and the usually laconic press release offered a laundry list of complaints.“The Committee is aware of public allegations that Representative Matt Gaetz may have engaged in sexual misconduct and/or illicit drug use, shared inappropriate images or videos on the House floor, misused state identification records, converted campaign funds for personal use, and/or accepted a bribe/improper gratuity, or impermissible gift in violation of House rules,” the Committee wrote in a letter.And yet, no one in attendance for the “Dinner and Drinks with Rep. Matt Gaetz” event would have known that he is potentially fighting for his political future and, more importantly, his freedom. He delivered a speech that largely could have been recited at any Trump rally during the last four years.Still, as much as Gaetz continues to associate himself with the Trump brand, Trump himself appears to be keeping his distance.Republicans Have Been Waiting for a Matt Gaetz Scandal to BreakAs The Daily Beast reported late last week, advisers to the ex-president implored Trump to not publicly defend Gaetz, at least until more was known about the veracity of the allegations regarding a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl and the federal probe. For the most part, Trump has privately agreed with that advice, and various Trumpworld luminaries, members of the Trump family, and top Republicans and conservative media stars have shut the hell up about the Gaetz scandal.Some are already preparing to wash their hands of the loyal MAGA soldier, despite years of Gaetz vigorously going to bat for Trump on nearly every scandal or major controversy.None of the 16 former senior Trump admin officials, ex-campaign brass, longtime GOP operatives, and sources close to the ex-president contacted by The Daily Beast were willing to defend Gaetz on the record. Not a single one would even do so anonymously.When former President Trump finally did issue a statement on Gaetz on Wednesday, it was a brief, mostly self-serving statement that offered a half-hearted defense at best."Congressman Matt Gaetz has never asked me for a pardon," Trump said in a statement, after reports that Gaetz sought a blanket pardon for himself and other Trump cheerleaders. "It must also be remembered that he has totally denied the accusations against him."But for Gaetz, it’s all the vindication he needs.“The best is indeed yet to come,” Gaetz said at Friday night’s event.Matt Gaetz Said His ‘Travel Records’ Would Exonerate Him. Not So Fast.It’s a sentiment lifted from the 2020 Republican National Convention speech of Kimberly Guilfoyle, a prominent Trump ally and Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend.In the intervening time between when Guilfoyle first bellowed those words and when Gaetz said them Friday, Joe Biden beat Trump in the presidential election, the U.S. Capitol was overtaken by insurrectionists, Trump became the first U.S. president to get impeached twice, and it was exposed that Gaetz is the subject of a Justice Department probe into alleged sex trafficking and prostitution.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
What was it like to take on the part of the Duke of Edinburgh in the award-winning Netflix series?
- LA Times
The Lakers cruised after Dennis Schroder and Kyrie Irving were tossed early in the third quarter, picking up a 126-101 victory over the Brooklyn Nets.
The star, who appeared on the seventh series of Big Brother in 2006, had anorexia.
Police rushed to the scene of the reported shooting at an industrial park in Bryan, Texas, on Thursday afternoon.
- Idaho Statesman
The couple was reported missing after they didn’t return from a camping trip, police said.
- Architectural Digest
While locations of the kitchen and bathrooms are set, clients can customize the layouts to fit their needs, including open or traditional floor plans, and add amenities such as balconies, gardens, and parking. Architect Jeffrey Sommers of Square Root designed the semi-customizable C3 Pre-fab—the first LEED Platinum–certified home in Chicago—using corrugated Galvalume, reclaimed wood, and fiber cement. Modular construction allowed the firm to build on a narrow site that would have not have allowed traditional building methods.
- Associated Press
The NHL says the Vancouver Canucks will reopen team facilities Sunday and resume play Friday after a COVID-19 outbreak in which 21 players and four staff members tested positive for the virus. The Canucks’ next game will be their first since March 24. Vancouver general manager Jim Benning said Friday he was optimistic his team would still be able to complete the shortened, 56-game season.
- Associated Press
Japan has been sending golfers to the Masters since 1936, with about three dozen players combining for well over 100 appearances at Augusta National. Hideki Matsuyama’s four-shot lead going into Sunday’s final round of the Masters is a breakthrough moment for Japan, which became the 17th nation to see one of its players hold a lead after any round at Augusta National. It was 10 years ago when Matsuyama became the first Asia-Pacific Amateur champion to make the cut and be the low amateur at the Masters.
- Business Insider
On a range of political issues, businesses have felt compelled to speak out. But many are silent when it comes to tax hikes, if not hostile.
- WBAL - Baltimore Videos
Determined action came at the end of the week from lawmakers in Annapolis after Gov. Larry Hogan vetoed police reform bills. The Republican governor vetoed legislation Friday that includes the core components of a series of police reform bills. The legislation, nearly a year in the making, is in response to the Minneapolis police in-custody death of George Floyd and the protests of thousands of people demanding more police accountability and transparency.
- Raleigh News and Observer
The Cup Series completed 42 laps after a long rain delay and before the skies opened up again Saturday night.
- LA Times
The Angels waited out a rain delay that pushed back the first pitch by more than 2½ hours and then were crushed 15-1 by the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.
WASHINGTON/SEOUL (Reuters) -South Korean battery makers LG Energy Solution and SK Innovation Co agreed on Sunday to settle disputes over trade secrets dispute, avoiding a potential setback for U.S. electric-vehicle (EV) ambitions. The settlement by affiliates of two of South Korea's biggest conglomerates comes hours before a Sunday deadline for the administration of President Joe Biden to decide whether to take the rare step of reversing a U.S. International Trade Commission decision (ITC). The core dispute had threatened the EV plans of Ford Motor Co and Volkswagen AG, as well as a Georgia plant that is key to the growing industry.
- Associated Press Videos
The death of Prince Philip was the top story in British newspapers on Saturday morning. (April 10)