Madam Chairman, N.C. Representative Lucy Allen:
Thank you for allowing Deborah Dix and me to speak Friday at the Roanoke River Basin Bi-State Commission meeting. We, like so many others, had traveled some distance and really wanted to address the bi-state commission members.
1) Down The Yellowcake Road http://www.downtheyellowcakeroad.org/
Using this online converter: http://www.onlineconversion.com/auto_convert.pl
33 million liters = 8,717,677.7 gallons (See #2 for volume used in calculations.)
Please keep in mind that the proposed time table for mining and milling uranium at Coles Hill, near Chatham, Virginia (Pittsylvania County) will be for 30 to 40 years, by Virginia Uranium Inc.'s own estimation. Water sources close to Coles Hill include the Banister and Roanoke Rivers.*
A question was asked by Mr. Gene Adesso if VUI would be using this much water** and, of course, my response was that the amount was unknown because VUI, to my knowledge, has not given out that information.
Generalizing, should Virginia's moratorium on the mining and milling of uranium be lifted, other uranium-rich areas in Virginia could be mined. Most likely, there will only be one milling facility where all the mined uranium will be trucked/railed in for processing, but with multiple mines will come multiple demands for water usage. Further, speculation has it, the Banister and/or the Roanoke Rivers would not be able to meet the water needs of a uranium milling facility. Perhaps, the Dan River would be a potential water source, too.
Whatever the water source(s), using the numbers above, the needed water volume for multiple mines and one milling facility, over a 30 to 40 year-period, would total to an astronomical number. I respectfully request the issue of water usage in uranium mining and milling be critically addressed now, should Virginia's moratorium be lifted in the future.
2) Uranium in Queensland, Briefing Paper (section 2.1.1)
Per Section 2.1.1 Water: Uranium mining uses huge quantities of water. Water is needed for separating the uranium from the ore, for dust control and for covering the radioactive sludge. Olympic Dam in South Australia pumps 33 million litres a day from the Great Artesian Basin and is licensed to use 42 m litres a day...
Because I was born a Tarheel and have lived most of my adult life in Virginia, I am asking the members of this bi-state commission to be proactive in protecting the quality and quantity of water in the waterways of both states. I truly love North Carolina and Virginia and feel blessed to have called both states "home."
Again, thank you, Madam Chairman Allen, for kindly allowing us the opportunity to briefly address the bi-state commission.
Other Source Information:
**Wed Apr 29, 2009, NI 43-101 Technical Report for the Coles Hill Uranium Deposit:
http://www.santoy.ca/s/TechnicalReports.asp?ReportID=337251&_Type=Technical-Reports&_Title=NI-43-101-Technical-Report-for-the-Coles-Hill-Uranium-Deposit or http://www.santoy.ca/i/pdf/43-101ColesHill.pdf