Ute Tribe makes effort to control trash fires

Ute leaders are trying to change the behavior of burning all garbage, and are embarking on a education campaign about the health hazards to the air, water and soil. At a public hearing last week in Towaoc, the tribe’s environmental specialists discussed the persistent problem of burning at an abandoned landfill and common dumping area. The tribe is applying for an EPA grant to properly mitigate a 35-acre landfill located at the dumping site and tribal waste management transfer station. “It is good to get it cleaned up and managed better because of the toxins. A permanent solution there is good for our future,” said Priscilla Bancroft, superintendant for the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Towaoc. “Education is key so that our community knows the dangers of burning.”

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