NC Mayor wants Uranium Ban

Virginia Uranium Inc. often refers to “uranium recovery” from phosphate mining in Florida and Louisiana when trying to make the case for uranium mining in VA.  They do not mention NC…perhaps a little to close to home. “Today, our water table has been drawn down severely by that activity and the water level is so low that the state has mandated we reduce our intake from that aquifer by 75 percent,” he wrote. “That has left us no recourse but to build a new regional Surface Water Treatment Plant on the Roanoke River to supply current and future water needs for our community and surrounding area.”

Why does it seem that the majority of Pittsylvania Supervisors do not see the repercussions of uranium mining milling and radioactive waste disposal?  Snead and Barber seemed to indicate they may favor a resolution but egos seem to be involved as they bickered over who would write a resolution.  In all honesty, the BOS needs to pull their zoning and waste ordinances out of mothballs and work on those if they truly want to give citizens protection for health, waster quality and quantity, property values, continued agricultural base and future diverse economic development.

http://www.pittgov.org/documents/codes_ordinances/Chapter%2029%20-%20Waste%20Ordinance.pdf  Within the territorial boundaries of Pittsylvania County, Virginia, it shall be unlawful for any person to dispose of any solid waste without the expressed approval of the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors.”  We’re screwed if the Board remains as divided as it seems.

http://www.pittgov.org/documents/codes_ordinances/Chapter%2035%20-%20Zoning.pdf

I encourage you to familiarize yourself with the 2 ordinances above so that you can communicate with the BOS about the contents and possible revisions and amendments.

http://www2.godanriver.com/news/2012/oct/14/nc-mayor-wants-uranium-ban-ar-2279655/

BY MARY BETH JACKSON

mjackson@registerbee.com

(434) 791-7981

The mayor of Williamston, N.C., Tommy Roberson, has sent a letter to the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors in deep concern about how his area would be impacted if a uranium mine is allowed to be placed in Chatham.

His county commissioners have already sent a letter to the Pittsylvania supervisors in support of the ban.

“It’s a big deal, and most people in eastern North Carolina haven’t awakened to what could happen to us,” Roberson told the Danville Register & Bee on Friday.

Roberson wrote that phosphate mining in eastern North Carolina has already damaged his town’s water availability, despite promises to the contrary.

“Today, our water table has been drawn down severely by that activity and the water level is so low that the state has mandated we reduce our intake from that aquifer by 75 percent,” he wrote. “That has left us no recourse but to build a new regional Surface Water Treatment Plant on the Roanoke River to supply current and future water needs for our community and surrounding area.”

The price tag on that project is $27 million, with another $1 million going to modify its delivery system.

“These costs are being paid for by the citizens in an area that has the dubious distinction of being the fourth poorest area in the United States,” Roberson wrote, noting the area must completely rely on the Roanoke River for drinking water and has no other options.

He told the Register & Bee that he is also concerned about the ecotourism efforts in his region, which produces oysters and shrimp.

“I can’t even imagine what part of the state tourism comes from that estuary area,” he said.

Roberson fears that any catastrophe resulting from uranium mining and milling will not only leave them with no drinking water, but kill off a growing ecotourism industry giving hope to their area, which has been labeled “economically stressed.” Furthermore, he said, the coastal ecosystem needs to be protected.

“It (the Roanoke River) provides 70 percent of the water in our sound,” he said. “That’s the complete estuary program in the eastern part of our state.”

He also fears the General Assembly will punt the issue back to Pittsylvania County and that local authorities will ultimately decide whether the mine happens or not.

“If the state of Virginia is going to shift the burden to them, then we need to be in communication with them,” he said.

Writing letters and talking to people, he said, is all he can do: “We have no way of applying any pressure, because we are not constituents of the state of Virginia.”

Jackson reports for the Danville Register & Bee.

——————————————–

Thanks for fwd’ing this around to your group’s vast email distribution list, Karen. As you well know, Dale Swiggett of Burlington, NC has been hollering about this very issue and all the interrelated issues for many yrs and in typical fashion has been the target of the old warfare tactic of ‘kill the messenger.’

Follow the $$ trail and see who stands to lose, whether it’s just a paycheck (bottom end of the scale) up to the highest end of the scale where power players’ bottom profit line is adversely affected. As the vast majority of folks know, there is a cost of ‘doing business’ but in reality it is normally a pittance when compared w/ huge profits.

For those who know Dale Swiggett, he is no different than any other human being in the fact that we are all flawed. Some have compared him to Mel Gibson’s character in the movie ‘Conspiracy Theory’ and others have described him as the Forest Gump of the Environment. In my opinion, his fall down the proverbial Alice’s Rabbit Hole has damaged him because he has consistently challenged the status quo who has been a part of the problem(s) or has participated in the cover-up. In reality, all this man wants to do is move forward in working w/ others to bring solutions to the problems that we are now left with. He has attracted other ‘whistleblowers’ who have weighed in on issues that make up the ugliest Gordian Knot ever but there is comfort (and incredible strength) in numbers.

Dale’s lawsuit against PCS Phosphate is still in play (Swiggett v. PCS Phosphate, 4:11-CV-00169), so I encourage you to forward my reply to you of gratitude and support for the fight against VUI’s push to mine uranium out to your email list, ma’m. The controversial Sea Level Rise issue has deep roots in what Dale and his group of experts have brought to light. And yes, all issues are related if people would just ‘connect the dots.’ The time that we now face is called ‘critical mass’ and it remains to be seen as to what transpires from this point going forward.

Edmund Burke put it so well…“All that’s necessary for the forces of evil to win in the world is for enough good men to do nothing.” Thanks again for all your hard work in keeping the masses informed, Karen!

Renee Warren (in NC)

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