What are the forces of renewal?

from Earth Island Journal . . .




by Mikhail Davis


. . . With the reservoir draining itself, there has never been a better opportunity for those seeking to restore Glen Canyon to make their case.

Lost wonders like Cathedral in the Desert and Gregory Natural Bridge are becoming visible for the first time in over 30 years. Vegetation and wildlife like otter and beaver are returning as creeks flush sediment from long-inundated side canyons. And color is rapidly returning to the old Powell "bathtub ring" every day.

The challenge now is to hold the ecological gains that the drought has allowed for and ensure that this is indeed the first step toward restoration, not merely another fluctuation in the reservoir level. GCI is now researching legal strategies that would grant the re-emerging Glen Canyon the protection it was denied in 1963, before the advent of modern environmental law required the government to consider the consequences of its actions.

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I have long suspected that my father may have had a special knowledge of the Great Spirit -- stemming, perhaps, from his Shiprock experience. The region-wide drought in the American Southwest after his passing, effectively draining Glen Canyon, may lend credence to existence of this special association.


[Photograph: David Brower, Shiprock]