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Video: Vice News Explores Coal’s Effect on the Navajo Nation

VICE News visits the Navajo Nation to report on the harmful effects of coal mining and combustion on the reservation's residents.
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The images are gripping, the statements prophetic.

“I’m concerned about everything. I’m concerned about that smoke, I’m concerned about that power plant, and I’m concerned about the land that they ruined, and the sky,” says one man quoted in the trailer for an upcoming report on coal and the Navajo Nation.

“Everything is due to the coal, the doctors say,” says a reclined man with breathing tubes emerging from his nose, speaking in Navajo.

Vice News is going to the Navajo Nation to explore the effects of coal mining and power generation on the reservation.

“There's a resource curse on the Navajo Nation,” the news site says in its introduction to the trailer below. “The 27,000-square-mile reservation straddling parts of Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah has an extremely high abundance of many energy resources—particularly coal. That coal is what's burned to provide much of the Southwest with electricity, and it creates jobs for the Navajo. But the mining and burning have also caused environmental degradation, serious health issues, and displacement.”

Much has been made of the Navajo acquisition of the BHP Billiton coal mine in late 2013.

RELATED: Navajo Nation Finalizes Sale of BHP Billiton Mine

Navajo Nation Is Coal Country as Mine Sale Finalized

The issues to be explored by Vice News date back decades, but now the Navajo Nation must contend with the problems.

The report is part of a nationwide exploration of the effects of coal mining, transport and combustion that Vice News has been conducting over the past several months, as have other media outlets. 

RELATED: The Toll of Coal: Los Angeles Times Explores Effects on the Navajo Nation

For an inkling of what Vice News has in store for viewers interested in the Navajo Nation, check out the news organization’s other videos at Cursed by Coal: Mining the Navajo Nation.