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The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s permit approval will only allow a Phoenix company to research its proposal for hydropwer dams on the Little Colorado River, but that small step was still worrying to regulators, environmental and tribal groups worried about the fate of the pristine river.

Federal regulators have given a Phoenix company the green light to study a hydropower project for the Little Colorado River, what opponents fear is a first step toward “destroying incredibly rare, beautiful, sacred resources.” Read more»

The confluence of the Colorado and Little Colorado rivers in the Grand Canyon has spiritual significance to many local tribes. Cultural heritage is just one of the reasons cited for a plan to add 1.7 million acres of protected land around the canyon.

Tribal leaders joined Rep. Raul Grijalva on Tuesday urging President Barack Obama to designate 1.7 million acres around the Grand Canyon as a national monument, bypassing Congress in the process. Read more»

Sediment spilled from a mine colors the Animas River in Durango, Colorado, on Aug. 6.

Citing the release of millions of gallons of toxic wastewater into a southwestern Colorado river earlier this month, a coalition of conservation groups, two Native American tribes and two county governments in Arizona petitioned federal agencies Tuesday to tighten mining regulation on public lands. Read more»

This gigantic gorge cut into the earth over millions of years by the mighty Colorado River overwhelms the senses and defeats attempts to capture it in words or photos. Read more»

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, shown here in a February hearing, praised the tribes for their efforts, saying that without a settlement both sides faced a “limbo of endless litigation.”

Federal officials announced a $1 billion settlement Wednesday of claims filed by 41 tribes, including five from Arizona, who said the government had long mismanaged their trust lands. Read more»

Members of the Hopi Tribe constructed a replica of a traditional dwelling for the Arizona Best Fest centennial celebration in Prescott.

As part of Arizona's centennial celebrations, 17 of the state's 22 American Indian tribes created a native village at the Best Fest in Prescott. The festival will later move to Tucson and Phoenix, the other two territorial capitals. Read more»