Norton's client tied to Goshute nuclear group
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JANUARY 18, 2001

Gale Norton, George W. Bush's controversial nominee to head the Department of Interior, has listed as one of her top clients a company which merged with another one proposing to store hundreds of thousands of tons of nuclear waste on the Skull Valley Goshute Reservation in Utah.

As a lawyer with Brownstein, Hyatt & Farber, Norton did work for New Century Energies, a Colorado company. The company merged with Northern States Power of Minnesota, one of the members of a consortium seeking to store up to 40,000 tons of waste on the Goshute reservation.

The tribe has supported the facility, citing economic needs. They have partnered with Private Fuel Storage to accept spent nuclear fuel from across the nation.

Officials in the state, however, oppose the site. The Bureau of Indian Affairs, which Norton would oversee, is one of several agencies which has to approve the facility

Norton also owns stock in the Prima Energy Corporation, a company which owns oil and natural gas wells on lands she would manage if confirmed. Her spokesperson said she would sell the stock, estimated to be worth $1,000 and $15,000.

Her spokesperson also said she would convert an annuity from the Mountain States Legal Foundation into a retirement account. The firm is suing the Department of Interior on several issues, including some affecting tribes. The firm also filed briefs in Supreme Court cases in which the outcomes negatively impacted tribes.

XCel Energy, the company formed by the merger of New Century and Northern States, also contracts hydroelectric power from a Canadian company who has been criticized for negatively impacting the environment and culture of the the Pimicikamak Cree First Nation.

Get the Story:
Norton vows to divest gas holdings (The Denver Post 1/18)
Norton owns stock in company with oil, gas wells on federal land (AP 1/17)

Relevant Links:
Stop Gale Norton -

Say No to Norton -
Private Fuel Storage -
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee -

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