The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Documentary Exposes Fossil Fuel Industries Assault on the Wild West
Sometimes it seems like there's no frontier left unspoiled by greed and the potential for profit.
A new documentary, Last Rush for the Wild West: Tar Sands, Oil Shale and the American Frontier, by filmmaker Jennifer Eckstrom, talks about another piece of the American landscape under assault from the fossil fuel industry: the strip mining of more than a million acres of tar sands and oil shale in eastern Utah. It addresses the wilderness landscapes that would be destroyed, increased pollution it would bring to already heavily polluted Salt Lake City and threat to the Colorado River watershed, which provides drinking water to 36 million people.
“I made this film because of the magnitude of destruction on the horizon in America if strip mining for tar sands and oil shale is allowed to gain momentum," said Eckstrom, who has a long record of environmental activism. "The massive strip mines that have already been approved by the State of Utah, under the public's radar, are unprecedented and out of step with the needs of humanity on many levels. Too often we realize the foolishness of our decisions after the fact. We now have a rare opportunity to stop this really bad project before it begins.”
Last Rush for the Wild West will debut in the heart of the impacted area, screening at the Moab International Film Festival in Utah on Sept. 19.
According to the film's Facebook page, "The recreation mecca of Moab, Utah is a front-line community positioned directly downstream from proposed tar sands and oil shale strip mines. Moab residents would be among the first in the Colorado River watershed to be impacted by pollution inevitably created by this type of mining practice."
If you can't get out to Moab, watch the trailer here:
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
A jury in Missouri awarded a farmer $265 million in a lawsuit that claimed Bayer and BASF's weedkiller destroyed his peach orchard, as Reuters reported.
A coalition of local and national groups on Friday launched a legal challenge to a Louisiana state agency's decision to approve air permits for a $9.4 billion petrochemical complex that Taiwan-based Formosa Plastics Group plans to build in the region nationally known as "Cancer Alley."
Well, he told us he would do it. And now he's actually doing it — or at least trying to. Late last week, President Trump, via the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management, announced that he was formalizing his plan to develop lands that once belonged within the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments in southern Utah. The former is a stunningly beautiful, ecologically fragile landscape that has played a crucial role in Native American culture in the Southwest for thousands of years; the latter, just as beautiful, is one of the richest and most important paleontological sites in North America.