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Local group forms in support of uranium mining in Virginia

According to a news story in the Gazette-Virginian, a new local group called People for Economic Prosperity has embarked on a campaign in support of developing a promising uranium deposit at Coles Hill in Pittsylvania County, Virginia, roughly 30 miles north of the North Carolina border.

Experts consider the deposit the “the nation’s richest untapped source of uranium oxide.” In order to harness the deposit’s potential, Virginia’s 1982 moratorium on mining uranium would have to be lifted, and the local debate has sparked a national controversy over the merits of uranium mining.

As industry figures place the United States’ reliance on foreign imports of uranium to meet domestic needs at a whopping 95 percent, and in light of uranium’s relevance as reactor fuel, it is a debate worth having.

While environmentalists are quick to dismiss any uranium mining proposals as risky and harmful to the environment, People for Economic Prosperity points to impressive Canadian mining successes using the highest safety standards and stringent regulations, and argues that the Coles Hill deposit “can and will be mined safely and that Pittsylvania County will benefit immensely from the direct and indirect economic benefits including jobs and capital investment.”

To learn more about the group, visit www.PEPsouthside.org (after the end of the month, as the group’s website is currently under construction).