Stimson in the News

Lovely Umayam cited in relation to her film “Ways of Knowing” which focuses on areas of the Navajo Nation affected by uranium contamination

in Program

GALLUP, N.M. — Activists are using virtual reality technology to focus on areas of the Navajo Nation affected by uranium contamination.

The arts collective Bombshelltoe has collected 360-degree footage of land near Churchrock, New Mexico, to show how people and the land have changed since a 1979 uranium mill spill, the Gallup Independent reports .

The film, titled “Ways of Knowing,” was directed by artist Kayla Briet.

The project started four years ago after Washington, D.C.-based nuclear policy program manager Lovely Umayam met Navajo activist Sunny Dooley at an event in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Filmmaker Adriel Luis is also a co-producer of the movie.

“Sunny asked us during this meeting, ‘Where is your heart?’ And it caught my – along with everyone else’s – attention,” Umayam said.

In 1979, a dam on the Navajo Nation near Church Rock broke at a uranium mill’s evaporation pond, releasing 94 million gallons (356 million liters) of radioactive waste into the Puerco River.

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