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EPA Taking Public Comment on Azarga Uranium Mining Permits thru May 19

The Environmental Protection Agency is taking public comment on the two draft permits it wants to issue to foreign corporation Azarga/Powertech to shoot water into the southern Black Hills to bring uranium to the surface. The EPA held a public meeting in Valentine last Thursday; they’ll hold meetings around the Black Hills next week:

  1. Monday-Tuesday, May 8-9, 2017 from 1:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (with a break from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.), Best Western Ramkota Hotel, 2111 North Lacrosse Street, Rapid City.
  2. Wednesday, May 10, 2017 from 1:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (with a break from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.), Mueller Center, 801 South 6th Street, Hot Springs.
  3. Thursday, May 11, 2017 from 1:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (with a break from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.), St. James Catholic Church, 310 3rd Avenue, Edgemont.

The Black Hills Clean Water Alliance encourages your participation:

Black Hills Clean Water Alliance newspaper ad, posted to Facebook 2017.05.01.
Black Hills Clean Water Alliance newspaper ad, posted to Facebook 2017.05.01.

Clean water advocates continue to push hard against the in-situ uranium mining plan, which would drill 4,000 injection wells into an eight-square-mile area north of Edgemont in Fall River and Custer counties.

If you can’t make those meetings but have something to say, EPA will take your written comments by e-mail or snail mail. Submit comments by May 19 to EPA environmental scientist Valois Shea:

  • fax: 303-312-6741
  • post: U.S. EPA Region 8, Mail Code: 8WP-SUI, 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, Colorado  80202-1129

Related Financial News: Azarga’s penny stock rebounded to almost-nickel status around Inauguration time. It has since trended back down to three cents a share. Azarga insider Alexander Molyneux bought 66,000 Azarga shares in January, then sold 50,000 shares at a loss in April.


  1. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 09:26

    Yes, let’s get more of our power from clean coal instead. That’ll work. No dispersal of radionuclides or heavy metals via the combustion of coal or the disposal of coal fly ash to worry about.

    Let’s ignore the clean water issues associated with the processing of solar cells and the mining of rare earths used for wind power. Those problems occur somewhere else. While we are at it, let’s keep our lawns nice and green and monocultured with chemicals too.

    Let’s also avoid using wind power to clean the water to the desired levels as it is recycled, during or after the in situ mining occurs. That would mean wind and nuclear could actually work together. Can’t have that.

  2. Dave 2017-05-02 10:08

    Not being an expert, the in-situ recovery sounds sketchy to me. With the potential contamination of the ground water and the Cheyenne river, if not operated according to plan, could cause a lot of issues in that area. The unofficial mascot for Edgemont High is already the glow bugs.
    I do wonder of the overall intent of the company. If these companies can be trusted why is there abandoned open pit mines? Is there a closure plan for the existing open pits or are they just going to walk away from it?

  3. Donald Pay 2017-05-02 12:55

    It’s been a great stock to buy if you need a capital loss.

    Molyneux is also CEO of Paladin Energy, which Molyneux claims to be the eighth largest U producer. Molyneux is, however, Trumpian in his exaggerated claims for the companies he is associated with.

    One thing we know is Azarga isn’t going to develop this ISL property should they get their permits. It’s all going to be done by someone else. That’s the history of the Uranium field: the junior firms do the paperwork and make the promises, and secure the permitting under false pretenses, then the large firms take over. All the promises are forgotten, the corporate structures are buried under layers of subterfuge, and no one takes responsibility for the SNAFUs that develop.

    I intervened back in the early 1980s on the first and second attempts to develop this property. I’ll submit comments.

  4. jerry 2017-05-02 12:57

    Tell you what doc, why don’t you pack on up and move to that site for enjoyment. Hell, bring the kids as well nothing says fun in the sun like swimming and drinking in the residue like you want west river folks to do. Read what Mr. Dave has written and you can get a pretty good idea about what we all can expect if the mine gets its permit.

  5. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 13:15

    If you would prefer the steam shovel form of mining, mountaintop removal form of mining, or hand and pick-axe form of mining that expose people and the environment to more dust and a larger set of physical and chemical and radiological impacts…by all means, go ahead.

    But please at least be consistent in your desires for mining and its environmental impacts for your favorite energy source as you are with uranium for nuclear energy.

    If you want to over-monitor in situ mining via trace element analyses in water/soil sampling and air monitoring, and stop when necessary and readjust your technique when certain levels are exceeded, that would be fine with me.

  6. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 13:23

    Slide 30
    Nuclear Regulatory Commission
    Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement

    “The staff will not approve an ACL if it will impact
    any adjacent USDWs.” USDW = underground
    source of drinking water

    “The use of modeling and additional
    groundwater monitoring may be necessary to
    show that ACLs in ISR well fields would not
    adversely impact USDWs.”

  7. jerry 2017-05-02 13:26

    I say reuse the crap that we already have. Good grief you want to dig a hole in Philip to bury the nuke crap and then you want to ruin the drinking water along with the air in this fiasco. The definition of insanity is to keep doing the same things over and over while expecting different results. So when ya gonna move out there and be at one with yourself?

  8. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 13:40

    You won’t be able to re-use any of the wastes that are being proposed for disposal by the borehole technique. Those are Strontium and Cesium from nuclear weapons development…no uranium, thorium, or plutonium in the capsules that DOE is trying to bury.

    The uranium from such in situ mining would displace the use of coal…not just in the United States, but around the world.

  9. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 13:42

    I agree with you Jerry that we should be reprocessing those other wastes to reduce the need to mine fresh uranium in the first place.

  10. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 15:27

    “Nevertheless, market fundamentals are expected to improve for uranium producers over the next few years as a result of the 57 reactors currently under construction, some tentative signs of momentum picking up on the restart of Japan’s nuclear units, and the need for a reliable source of low-carbon baseload power to help meet a projected 50% increase in electricity demand over the next 20 years.”

  11. Dave 2017-05-02 15:36

    Got turned around trail riding in the hills and ended up driving through that area. No fences, no warning signs, just huge excavations with colbalt blue water in the bottom. Is is safe? no one will say……

    I’m not against clean energy, nukes are a viable source. But lets not leave a disaster behind when we are done…

  12. Robert McTaggart 2017-05-02 16:04

    I agree…if it is worth doing, then it is worth doing right the first time. Steam shovel extraction is not the way to go.

    We should also be reprocessing to reduce what we need to dispose of, if not what we need to mine…..but we are not.

  13. Donald Pay 2017-05-02 16:31

    A major concern is that parts of that site had thousands of unplugged and inadequately plugged holes through the confining layer. ISL mining in that area is likely to result in migration of solutions out of that confining layer. Now, I suppose EPA is hiding behind the fact that modeling shows that leached materials through these incompletely capped holes and other fissures won’t degrade a source of drinking water. That is not the same as saying it will not degrade other water sources. This facility will behave in a way that drives degradation of those sources.

    EPA’s standards are horribly weak. They could not withstand the standard of non-degradation of any water source, which is what the standard should be.

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