Saturday, July 13, 2013

Anti-uranium documentary to be screened Saturday:  Hot Water

Last Updated on 07:41 AM 07/08/13
BY Special to the Gazette

Hollywood is coming to Halifax this weekend when the public is invited to view a free screening of a new a one hour, 20 minute anti-uranium mining documentary Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Halifax County High School auditorium.

“Hot Water,” a documentary exposing the long-term devastation wrought by uranium mining and the nuclear industry, follows the investigative journey of Liz Rogers,as she travels around the nation examining the legacy of uranium mining, atomic testing and the creeping danger of contaminated waste in the drinking water of 38 million people. 
Rogers and her production partner, Kevin Flint, examine the health and environmental impacts of the uranium industry and examine the possibility of a Fukushima type disaster along the California coastline. 
“We The People of Virginia, Inc.” is bringing the film screening of “Hot Water” to Halifax County where a moratorium on uranium mining has been at the center of a statewide battle between activists and the uranium mining industry. 
The documentary is described as a “powerful film that exposes the truths behind how the ground water, air and soil of the American Southwest came to be contaminated with some of the most toxic substances and heavy metals known to man due to the mining of uranium and the health and environmental impacts that followed.”
According to Jack Dunavant of Halifax, chairman of “We the People,” “These occurrences in the American Southwest should act as a warning sign to the citizens of Southside Virginia and beyond, as the film portrays the risks the area will be taking if Pittsylvania County welcomes such a destructive industry.” 
In the uranium mining documentary, filmmakers Liz Rogers and Kevin Flint begin in South Dakota witnessing communities overwhelmed by cancer from what they described as constant exposure to uranium from local mining interests. They speak with academic experts who pierce through the industry’s claims of safety. They take samples showing that radioactive material is seeping toward the nation’s breadbasket. 
Rogers and Flint follow the story to Oklahoma to explain the economic model of the industry. Private companies mine the uranium for a massive profit. Local workers and residents are made promises, but when finally forced to admit the environmental and health impact of the mining, the companies take their profits, declare bankruptcy and saddle the American taxpayer with hundreds of billions of dollars in clean-up costs, according to the documentary. 
“I took this journey because I was pissed off. I felt like an idiot because I believed the lies. I believed we were safe. I made this film because people need to know the truth.” 
In the film, Rogers and Flint speak with academic experts including biologist Charmaine Whiteface; Dr. Kim Kearfott, nuclear engineer and professor of nuclear engineering at University of Michigan; Dr. Hannan LaGarry, professor of geology at Oglala Lakota College; Dr. Jim Stone, professor of civil engineering at the South Dakota School of Mines; as well as former congressman and leading environmental supporter Dennis Kucinich. 
Following the screening of “Hot Water” at the high school on Saturday, discussion with filmmakers Lizabeth Rogers and Kevin Flint, Executive Producers Elizabeth Kucinich and Oscar® winner Donald C. Rogers will follow.
The screening is free to the public, with tax deductible donations accepted by the Hestia Gaea Foundation who are helping to fund the project.

New documentary takes aim at uranium mining industry; to be shown Saturday at HCHS / July 08, 2013
We The People of Virginia, Inc. will present a special preview showing of the new documentary, “Hot Water,” this Saturday night, July 13 at 7 p.m. in the Halifax County High School auditorium.

Saturday’s event is being co-sponsored by the Roanoke River Basin Association, the Virginia chapter of the Sierra Club, Keep the Ban, The Virginia Coalition, PRIDE and others.

 Present for the showing will be the film’s producer, Liz Rogers, who will be bringing her film crew to add a segment on the local uranium mining fight which is under way in Virginia.

An executive producer of the documentary is Elizabeth Kucinich, whose husband, former Rep. Dennis Kucinich, ran for president in 2008. The former Ohio congressman also is a supporter of the film, which made its world premiere Washington D.C.’s Environmental Film Festival in March.

The film has drawn extensive media coverage in outlets ranging from POLITICO to Fox News Business. Dennis Kucinich told POLITICO that “Hot Water” “is an important film because it takes people through what is really the initial stage of that fuel cycle, the mining of uranium and the poisoning of water supplies.
“This industry has too much influence. The industry is all about profits. They’re not about public safety. And, so, I think this film is important to get people thinking about the broader issues of nuclear power,” Kucinich said in the interview.

Jack Dunavant of We The People calls the documentary “a riveting film which graphically exposes the uranium mining industry in a shocking way — one that will make you fighting mad and make you want to do something about it.”

Dunavant is appealing to local residents to turn out to fill the school’s auditorium for the Saturday night film showing. All regional groups fighting uranium mining and all major donors will be recognized at the event.
Opponents of the mine were able to maintain the state’s ban on uranium mining during the last state legislative session, but reports indicate that Virginia Uranium is working hard to bring the issue back before the next legislative session by sponsoring wine festivals and barbecue cook-outs to get people to sign job creation petitions, urging state leaders to lift the ban on uranium mining.