Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Roanoke River Basin - Transmittal of Uranium Mining Resolutions / Hargrave Military Academy Alumni Against Uranium Mining / Uranium firm pumps money into assembly / To keep ban, leaders push residents to go to capitol / J4C hosts forum on uranium mining / Nuclear meltdown in Japan /

Committee considers uranium Bill – 12 out of 15 members took money from uranium company
money-lobbyingUranium firm pumps money into assembly

BY MARY BETH JACKSON, The Register & Bee, 21 Jan 13, The Senate bill proposing to lift the moratorium on uranium mining will be considered by a committee in which 80 percent of its members have taken money from Virginia Uranium.
Sen. John Watkins has said the legislation, filed Friday with the Senate Clerk, will be vetted through the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee; 12 of 15 committee members have accepted campaign money and trips from Virginia Uranium since 2008.
Virginia Uranium wants to mine a 119-million-pound uranium ore deposit in Pittsylvania County, approximately six miles from Chatham. The company has been lobbying the legislature to write regulations for uranium mining and milling, which would effectively lift a 1982 moratorium on the industry.

To keep ban, leaders push residents to go to capitol

While bills to lift the ban on uranium mining are making their way to the General Assembly clerk in Richmond, Halifax County Industrial Development Authority Chairman John Cannon said Friday the fate of Southside Virginia is ultimately being left in the hands of legislators from all over Virginia “instead of our delegates and senators.”
Cannon told authority board members during their meeting Friday morning that Virginia Uranium Inc. is continuing its massive lobbying effort, and he urged county citizens to travel to Richmond to voice their concerns about keeping the ban.
Cannon joined other county business leaders who ventured to Richmond last week to talk earnestly with legislators about the possibility of a uranium mine becoming operational next door in Pittsylvania County.
“They want to hear from us, not lobbyists,” Cannon told fellow authority board members.
Uranium opponents offered free bus trip to Richmond on Jan. 28
We the People of Virginia, Inc. is sponsoring a free bus trip for opponents of uranium mining on Monday, Jan. 28.
According to Jack Dunavant, chairman of We the People, the bus will leave St. John’s Church parking lot in Halifax at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 28, and will return by 5 p.m. the same day.
Dunavant encourages those going on the trip to bring lunch or have money to buy lunch.
“The people need to descend on the Capitol in the hundreds even thousands to send a message to our elected officials to stop uranium mining in Virginia now,” he said. “Our politicians will decide our fate in the next few weeks. They need to know that the people overwhelmingly say no to uranium mining.”
“Please take a day from work to save your property values and your family’s health. Come join us, and let’s take our message to Richmond,” he added.
Also, Dunavant urged opponents of uranium mining to visit www.generalassembly.gov and call or email all the representatives and tell them to keep the moratorium on uranium mining.
“We all can play a part, but we really need you on this trip,” he added.
For more information or to register for the bus ride to Richmond on Jan. 28, call 434-476-6648
J4C hosts forum on uranium mining
2:51 p.m. EST, January 21, 2013
JAMES CITY - Two citizen activist groups have joined to host a forum on uranium mining later this month, according to a release.
The James City County Citizens Coalition, or J4C, along with the Williamsburg Climate Action Network, will hold the free forum on Jan. 31 to discuss the proposal to lift the 30-year ban on uranium mining in the commonwealth.
Nathan Lott, executive director of the Virginia Conservation Network, will speak. The network includes more than 100 organizations committed to protecting the state's natural resources. Both Linda Rice, co-founder of Friends of Forge Road & Toano and former J4C board member, and Henry Broaddus, dean of admissions at William & Mary, serve on the network's board.
Want to go? The free forum will be held 7-8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 31, at the Williamsburg Unitarian Universalists, 3501 Ironbound Road. Visit http://jcc-j4c.org/ for more information

Fukushima radiation increasing in sea food chain? Record Cesium level in rockfish

radiation-in-sea--food-chaiRecord cesium levels measured in Fukushima rockfish, signaling radiation woes in food chain far from over in Japan

Part of: Nuclear meltdown in Japan Less than two months shy of the second anniversary of the devastating triple nuclear meltdown at Japan’s coastal Fukushima Daiichi plant, a fish containing more than 2,500 times Japan’s legal limit for radiation has been caught by the plant’s operator in waters near the wrecked facility. Bellona, Charles Digges, 21/01-201
The ‘murasoi’ fish, similar to a rockfish – indicating an amount of cesium measuring 254,000 Becquerel per kilogram, or 2,540 times Japans limit for radiation in seafood – was caught at a port inside the plant by its owner, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) Friday, according to AFP.
The utility also released a photo of the fish, caught near an unloading point north of the No. 1 through No. 4 reactors. No fishermen operate in the nuclear plant’s port.
Friday’s catch shatters the previous record for wildlife contamination as a result of radioactive contamination, which was was 25,800 Becquerel of cesium per kilogram found in two greenlings caught about 20 kilometers north of the plant in August 2012, the Asashi Shimbun newspaper reported.

Uranium mining

By Freeda CathcartCathcart was a candidate for the 17thHouse of Delegates in 2011. The public can attend her free presentation on the Risks and Benefits of Uranium Mining in Virginia at Roanoke College's Trexler Hall Room 372 on Jan. 31 at 7:30 p.m.

Uranium mining will not happen in Southside Virginia even if the General Assembly votes for the regulations nullifying the moratorium. The reason will be the same one that has kept the moratorium in place since the 1980s. Southside's uranium will not be marketable.
Virginia Uranium has been trying to convince the General Assembly that it can mine and mill uranium safely. However, the insurance industry knows better than to insure a uranium operation. The company wants to pay a bond up front to pay for future mishaps. Essentially, it wants Virginia to insure its operation, which would make the taxpayers of Virginia liable for any mishaps that the bond doesn't cover. Lt. Gov.Bill Bolling is an insurance professional, and he recognized early that the possible benefits for the private uranium industry did not outweigh the public risk of exposure.
Wales shows a picture of a Canadian uranium mine surrounded by lakes as an example that it's safe to mine uranium where there is water. However, most of the water in those lakes comes from glacial and snow melt, with little precipitation from rainfall. Southside is subjected to flooding from hurricanes, tropical depressions and torrential rainfall.
Bodnar claims that we need to mine uranium to be energy independent. He claims that the U.S. can't rely on the importation of oil for our energy security. The U.S. exported more oil than it imported in 2011.
Coal mines are starting to shut down because coal is more expensive to mine than it's worth. The increasing supply of natural gas has made gas more attractive and caused the price of coal to fall.
So far, Gov. Bob McDonnell has spent more than $1 million of taxpayers' money on developing regulations for Virginia Uranium. Now the company wants Virginia to spend an estimated $5 million a year for a regulatory board for one corporation that has a potential commodity that will not be worth producing for market.
Uranium is not the fuel for the future. Uranium-powered nuclear reactors are not the answer to climate change. Our government needs to stop wasting our tax dollars on an out-of-date industry. Virginia needs to invest in energy that will protect our environment, health and economy.

Sent: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 8:36 AM
Subject: Roanoke River Basin - Transmittal of Uranium Mining Resolutions

Attached please find the letters from Chairman Mike McEvoy transmitting the uranium mining resolution to the Virginia and North Carolina Governors and legislators, as directed by the Roanoke River Bi-State Commission. I have also attached the resolution, which was posted to our website some time ago.
Tammy D. Stephenson
Program Coordinator
Office of Water Supply
Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
3019 Peters Creek Road
Roanoke, Virginia 24019
PH (540) 562-6828
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McEvoy Trans Ltr for UM Res Jan 2013.pdfMcEvoy Trans Ltr for UM Res Jan 2013.pdf
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UM Res to Va Gov Jan 2013.pdfUM Res to Va Gov Jan 2013.pdf
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UM Res to NC Gov Jan 2013.pdfUM Res to NC Gov Jan 2013.pdf
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