Wednesday, September 18, 2013

"Perception" of uranium mining

To the editor,

The May 22, 2013, editorial, “Uranium supporters gain strength” by Lillian Gillespie, chairperson People for Economic Prosperity (PEP), is an artfully executed advertising ploy designed to sell the public on mining, milling and radioactive waste disposal.

Don't buy it.
The December 2012 press release announcing formation of People for Economic Prosperity was issued by Julie Rautio. Rautio is a lobbyist for Virginia Uranium Inc. (VUI).

She is also founder of a Capital Results, a powerful public relations firm, and is reported to handle public affairs for Virginia Uranium. VUI's website links to the PEP website.

Capital Results' website boasts, "Perception is our reality. Everyday, Capital Results reinvents the art of building and mobilizing effective third party support for public policy issues."

It appears Capital Results' public relations campaign strategy includes Gillespie and VUI selling the "perception" that the uranium industry is safe and good business for Virginia.

None of the relevant, current, science-based reports support claims that uranium mining, milling and radioactive waste disposal can be done safely in Virginia.

An aggressive public relations campaign aimed at altering the public's perception is all VUI and PEP have to counter the reports which urge caution regarding the issue.

Altering public perception cannot erase the reality of risks and negative impacts associated with uranium mining, milling and radioactive/hazardous waste disposal.

Float Fisherman of Virginia, the Medical Society of Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation and the Danville Pittsylvania County Chamber of Commerce support a ban on uranium mining.

Each recognizes the very real threat that uranium mining and milling pose to water resources, human health, agriculture and Virginia's future economic development as revealed in the reports.

The numerous municipalities and organizations opposing the lifting of the ban and can be found at

Karen B. Maute