"...The colorful printout of the abandoned [URANIUM] mines and mill sites was the size of a conference table. The most contaminated site was ranked number one. It ....is known to those who live there as Coyote Canyon [New Mexico].
With the data so clearly showing that Coyote Canyon posed a danger to residents, the EPA moved the Nez family and others into temporary shelters. Workers began cleaning up--basically digging up a foot of soil and stockpiling it at the United Nuclear Corporation site next to the Nezes' property. General Electric, which now owns the property, was supposed to haul the soil away and safely dispose of it.
When I visit Coyote Canyon in August 2007, the Nezes are back home, and the place doesn't look the same. I drive past the hogan where Bertha's father lived. The flags are gone; the dirt surrounding the octagonal structure has been scraped. So has the earth around the Nezes' home and horse corral.
But the massive mound of contaminated earth, which the EPA had covered in heavy black plastic, has not been moved. The plastic is torn and blowing in the wind, along with fine particles of contaminated soil--a threat to the Navajos that seems, in my mind, a metaphor for the nuclear waste problem downstream."