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Colorado: Hearing on controversial uranium mill starts; conservation groups get formal party status

Many southwest Colorado residents are saying no thanks to uranium mining and milling in their region.

Hearing starts Oct. 15 for what would be the country’s first new uranium mill in 30 years

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — After a start-stop permitting procedure for a proposed uranium mill in southwestern Colorado was marred by inadequate public hearings, state officials will once again take input in formal proceedings starting Oct. 15.

This time, a judge has given three conservation groups formal standing for the hearings, which means that environmental advocates will be able to introduce evidence, testify and cross-examine witnesses.

The Piñon Ridge mill is proposed for the Paradox Valley, in southwestern Colorado near the Dolores River. The three groups — Rocky Mountain Wild, Colorado Environmental Coalition and the Center for Biological Diversity — will join the towns of Telluride, Ophir, and San Miguel County in voicing concerns about the proposed mill’s threats to air, water, wildlife and tourism. Continue reading

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Radioactive rain reported from West Coast to New England

Put your lead galoshes on — the rain is radioactive (but not very, the EPA says).

EPA says levels are well below any threshold triggering health concerns

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — EPA air monitors continue to detect low levels of radioactive rain in various locations across the U.S. from the damaged nuclear reactors in Japan. So far, the detected levels are well below thresholds that would raise public health concerns. West Coast monitors have detected radioactive iodine, cesium, and tellurium.

While the EPA says there is no cause for concern, not everyone agrees. Click here to read an alternative viewpoint from the Canadian Centre for Global Research.

The most recent reports of elevation radiation in precipitation events are from Pennsylvania and Massachusetts. EPA is reviewing this data — however, in both cases these are levels above the normal background levels historically reported in these areas. Click here to get the data from the EPA monitors. Continue reading

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