Unreal City: Las Vegas, Black Mesa, and the Fate of the West

Unreal City: Las Vegas, Black Mesa, and the Fate of the West

Judith Nies


An epic fight over land, water, and tool is erupting within the American West and the halls of Washington, DC. it all started whilst a 4,000-square-mile region of Arizona wilderness known as Black Mesa used to be divided among the Hopi and Navajo tribes. To the skin global, it was once a land fight among fractious Indian tribes; to political insiders and effort organisations, it was once a divide-and-conquer play for the 21 billion a whole lot coal underneath Black Mesa. this day, that coal powers reasonable electrical energy for l. a., a brand new water aqueduct into Phoenix, and the neon dazzle of Las Vegas.

Journalist and historian Judith Nies has been monitoring this tale for almost 4 a long time. She follows the cash and tells us the real tale of wealth and water, lying, and corruption on the optimum degrees of industrial and executive. Amid the backdrop of the breathtaking desolate tract panorama, Unreal City indicates 5 cultures colliding—Hopi, Navajo, international strength organisations, Mormons, and US executive agencies—resulting in a conflict over assets and the way forward for the West.

Las Vegas could allure 39 million viewers a yr, however the travelers mesmerized via the dancing water fountains on the Bellagio don’t ask the place the water comes from. They don’t see a urban with the nation’s maximum charges of foreclosures, unemployment, and suicide. They don’t see the extraordinary drop within the water point of Lake Mead—where Sin urban will get ninety percentage of its water supply.

Nies exhibits how the fight over Black Mesa lands is an instance of an international phenomenon within which big transnational organizations have the facility to split indigenous humans from their energy-rich lands with assistance from host governments. Unreal City explores how and why assets were taken from local lands, what it potential in an period of weather switch, and why, during this urban divorced from nature, the single other thing strong than cash is water.

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