According to a Media General story in the Lynchburg News Advance today, the Uranium Mining Sub-committee has approved the study on an 8 – 2 vote to determine if mining uranium can be done safely in Virginia. While most expected that it would, there were some small victories and a few minor surprised from General Assembly members who typically do not factor in public health concerns when they vote on business issues. Delegates Janis (R-56th District) and Abbott (I-59th District) were the two opposing votes.
The small victory I mentioned was moving the public health and environmental impacts to the top of the Statement of Task document, replacing the global market trend item as #1.
Delegate Danny Marshal (R-Danville) voiced his objection to going ahead with the study. More than 100 people attended the meeting and about 20 made public comments.
It seems that the committee members have gotten the message that the public health and safety should be the top priority. But I really don’t know what this study is going to tell them that we don’t already know. Uranium is radioactive. If not mined and stored properly and safely, it will cause widespread health problems and will kill any land development possibilities for thousands of years due to the environmental damage and contaminated water sources.
It will take two years to complete the study, so until then…