Nevada Test Site

Much of the United States' nuclear weapons testing has occured at the Nevada test site on Western Shoshone lands, known as Newe Sogobia. Between 1951 and 1992, the US conducted both atmospheric and underground nuclear tests, detonating more than 1,000 nuclear weapons.[1] These nuclear tests sent radioactive fallout into the air and left the ground and water contaminated with radioactive waste. This radioactive fallout has created ongoing health risks for residents downwind of the test site.[2] Ian Zabarte (Principle Man for the Western Bands of the Shoshone Nation of Indians) describes the United States' designation of Shoshone homalends as a national sacrifice zone a "secret massacre of Shoshone people with radioactive poison."[3] 

Resource Documents

"The Assessment of Radiation Exposures in Native American Communities from Nuclear Weapons Testing in Nevada” 

Abstract: "Native Americans residing in a broad region downwind from the Nevada Test Site during the 1950s and 1960s received significant radiation exposures from nuclear weapons testing. Because of differences in diet, activities, and housing, their radiation exposures are only very imperfectly represented in the Department of Energy dose…


[1] "Nevada Test Site," Atomic Heritage Foundation

[2]  Kevin Loria, "Nuclear explosions from the past are still causing cancer and health problems today," Business Insider, August 17, 2017,….

[3]  Ian Zabarte, "Nevada Views: Nuclear tests and the Shoshone People," Las Vegas Review-Journal, June 27, 2020,….