Monday, March 7, 2011

Environment & Infrastructure Bills Introduced in Congress

Rep. Raul Grijalva (AZ) has introduced the Grand Canyon Watersheds Protection Act of 2011 (H.R. 855). The bill would make more than 1 million acres of federally-owned land unavailable for disposal, mining, and mineral and geothermal leasing. Existing rights on these lands would continue until they are relinquished or otherwise acquired by the federal government.

Rep. Dave Camp (MI) introduced the Stop Asian Carp Act (H.R. 892). The bill would direct the Corp of Engineers to study the feasibility of separating the Great Lakes basin from the Mississippi River basin. A similar bill has been introduced in the Senate (S. 471).


  1. As the owner of a small civil engineering firm in Connecticut it is encouraging to hear that more and more land over time is being protected. In CT we do not have intensive operations such as mining so it is not something we as engineers even think about around here.

  2. Thanks for your thoughtful comment, CT Engineer. IW doesn’t frequently write about mining, but writes from a state with a mining history. Missouri has a history of lead mining that goes back almost as long as European settlement in the area. Iron mining used to be common, but most metals still mined here, such as copper, zinc, and silver, are associated with the lead industry. Coal mining used to be common, too, but is less so since low-sulfur coal has become preferred. Mining of industrial minerals like cement, clay, sand, dolomite, granite, lime, and stone occurs across the state. We’re far from the Grand Canyon basin, and there is not an abundance of federal land here compared to states farther west, so mining here wouldn’t be affected by H.R. 855 if it passes.