The mining companies Rio Tinto and BHP - Billiton have created a subsidiary (Resolution Copper) that is proposing to mine a rich copper vein more than 7,000 feet below sea level east of Superior, Arizona. As a first step, Rio Tinto is currently shopping around a land exchange bill S. 409 that would end an executive order banning mining from Oak Flat Campground and privatize more than 2,400 acres of public land.

Concerned citizens are worried about the loss of Oak Flat Campground, a very popular recreation area. Birders, climbers, campers, canyoneers, bikers, and hikers enjoy the area throughout the year, all of whom would be greatly harmed if these lands were forever taken from public access. Native Americans have traditionally used the area for cultural, spiritual purposes, and for sustenance.

All Arizona tribes oppose the Land Exchange. The National Congress of American Indians passed a unanimous resolution in June of 2009 opposing all legislation that would allow mining at Oak Flat. In addition, the Concerned Citizens and Retired Miners Coalition in Superior, AZ are opposed to the land exchange and have recently testified in Washington, DC against S. 409. This documentary is about the struggle to save Oak Flat.

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Directed and Edited by Bryan O’Neal
Director of Photography: Ruben Ruiz
Produced by Roger Featherstone

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