Tuesday, July 10, 2007


Today, July 10, USA Today has a story summarizing the hopes for a revival of uranium mining. The dateline is Grants. Jobs are coming, the story indicates, though not in big numbers for now. The story is evenly told, quite unlike a December 24,2006, tale the Albuquerque Journal picked up from the Los Angeles Times that had as its focus, according to one subhead, "Uranium's Toxic Legacy."

"Trading at $7 a pound in 2001, "yellowcake," as it is called, hit $120 a pound in May. By the end of June it raked in as much as $138 a pound on the spot market.
"The surging price has lured more than two dozen companies with mining expertise to the high-desert uranium fields here in just the past year or so, says John Indall, a Santa Fe lawyer for the Uranium Producers of America. The companies are reviving old claims, searching filing cabinets for forgotten geological maps and hiring old-timers who know the land.
"Uranium is found widely, but New Mexico is the mother lode. Indall estimates that 600 million pounds of uranium lie under New Mexico's sandy soil. And the energy produced by a pellet of uranium the size of a fingertip is equal to that produced by nearly a ton of coal, Lister says.
"Yet not everyone is hankering for a uranium boom.
"Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley signed a tribal law two years ago banning mining on Navajo lands, which cover much of rural New Mexico. He says the last boom left behind radiation, pollution and disease.
"'I believe the powers that be committed genocide on Navajo land by allowing uranium mining, he said.
"Not all Navajos agree."

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