What If If Virginia Lifts Ban On Uranium Mining? Report Identifies Health and Environmental Issues

Recently groups in Virginia have been calling for an end to Virginia’s approximately 30 year moratorium on Uranium mining. However, if Virginia lifts its ban on Uranium mining it will have to surmount “steep hurdles–such as developing a regulatory setting that “protects workers, the public, and the environment.” Due to this, if the ban is lifted Virginia would only begin work on the mine in the next “five to eight years.”  These precautions are necessary as Uranium mining runs the risk “of exposure to ionizing radiation from uranium and its decay products”. As well, it has been noted that not much is known about the long-term “environmental risk of uranium tailings, the solid waste left after processing.” The Commonwealth of Virginia concluded that the use of Uranium would require support from a continually informed public.  

Steven Angueira 
AP Environmental Science
Topic #2: Mining


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