Thursday, April 30, 2009

Powertech fails to answer question [on water contamination]

Sound familiar?

April 30, 2009

On April 23, I attended a Crosscurrents panel discussion titled, "Uranium Mining - To Be or Not To Be." The panel was conducted by the League of Women Voters, was recorded and can be viewed on local cable television.

During the discussion, Richard Clement, CEO of Powertech (USA), Inc., was asked what guarantees Powertech could provide the people of Northern Colorado that their groundwater and environment would not be contaminated by Powertech's proposed in-situ leach mining of uranium within the aquifer in Weld County.

Clement failed to directly answer this question and the request for his company's guarantees by referring to Powertech's being required to comply with state mining regulations. Clement failed to acknowledge that Powertech would have primary and most immediate responsibility for preventing contamination of our groundwater if the company's plans to mine uranium in the aquifer in Weld County are approved.

During the discussion, I wanted, but was unable, to ask Clement to explain what caused exploratory well-drilling for a similar in-situ leach mining project in Goliad County, Texas, to contaminate that county's groundwater. Currently, the Goliad County government is suing the mining company that drilled the wells (Uranium Energy Corp.) for having ruined the county's water.

Perhaps, Clement can explain what caused the contamination of Goliad County's water by writing a letter to this newspaper. In doing so, maybe Clement can publicly offer Powertech's guarantees that any similar contamination will not happen to our water.

John S. Dixon,

Fort Collins

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