Virginia's Uranium Mining Moratorium

Text from our January 25, 2013 email alert:

 
Piedmont Environmental Council

Time To Write Your State Reps About Uranium Mining

Supporter,

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Even in the arid west, uranium tailings have ended up leaching into the water supply.
Photo credit: Atlas Mill site in Utah, where a billion dollar taxpayer funded cleanup is underway. By Rose Jenkins

The bills to lift the ban on uranium mining and milling have officially hit Richmond. Despite widespread opposition from local governments and businesses, HB 2330 and SB 1353 were submitted and are now moving through their respective committees -- putting the health of Virginia's air, water and ultimately its people at risk.

Unfortunately, these bills are as bad as we expected them to be. Proponents claim that mining would be limited to Pittsylvania County, but the bills are drafted in a way that would allow mining throughout the Commonwealth with simple amendments. Most disturbingly, these 21st century bills do not even offer as much protection to the citizens and the environment as the bills that were rejected by the General Assembly in the 1980s.

Tell Your Delegates and Senator:
Vote No on Lifting the Ban

Let your legislators know that lifting the ban to satisfy a few investors is not worth risking Virginian's health and businesses for decades to come.
signon

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The communities most directly affected by uranium mining have passed resolutions against lifting the ban (indicated in orange). This includes Pittsylvania, Halifax, Mecklenburg, Burnswick, Charlotte & Southhampton, and Dansville, Martinsville, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth & Suffolk. They've been joined by our Piedmont counties of Fauquier, Rappahannock, Madison, and Orange.
See the full map>>

Virginians Unite Against Uranium Mining

In the wake of the National Academy of Sciences study, which found that uranium waste sites represent "significant potential sources of contamination for thousands of years," opposition has been growing. Local governments (even Pittsylvania County!), regional Chambers of Commerce, the Virginia Lt. Governor, the Virginia Farm Bureau, environmental groups, and many others have all come together to oppose this dangerous experiment.

 

Even if fool-proof technology could be invented and put into place, and then remain effective for the hundreds of thousands of years that would be necessary, Virginia would have to create and enforce an expensive and labor intensive regulatory regime to protect its citizens. Nothing in these bills assures us this would take place.

We are working hard on this issue, but delegates and senators want to hear directly from their constituents. Be sure to send an email today and if you're able, join Virginia Conservation Network, the Garden Club of Virginia and countless volunteers as we take our conservation priorities to the Capitol this Monday, January 28, 2013 at 8:30am.

Sincerely,

Dan Holmes
Director of State Policy
The Piedmont Environmental Council
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The Piedmont Environmental Council | P.O. Box 460, Warrenton, VA 20188 | (540) 347-2334